This was my only status on Friday. It’s not much but it is all I had. I couldn’t find any other words. I closed my computer and walked away.
Saturday morning I was treated to a belated birthday breakfast because when your friend works more than you do, you both work hard to find a block of time to sit quietly over coffee, eggs and English muffins.
At some point, between bites, I heard myself say, “I feel like such a fraud.” I can’t remember the rest of my exact words. I think I said things like, “I pretend I can do things that I can’t ever effectively pull off” and “I masquerade as one who knows what she’s doing when really the only thing I’m doing well is losing my mind.”
At least that is how I remember the conversation going. In hindsight, I am sure that my words dripped with discontentment. All I remember for sure is that she nodded and chuckled. She gets me.
I came home after that good breakfast and great conversation and tried to write. After a few pathetic starts without any substance, I closed my computer and walked away again. I still had nothing.
It wasn’t until Sunday that it all came together when my friend and pastor stood before me and a few others and said, “How’s your soul? Are you content?” Thankfully, I didn’t have to answer out loud.
These words came up on the screen and I breathed them in…
… I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:11-13
Contentment. I’ve tasted it a few times in my 47 years but I can’t say that I’ve ever truly been content for more than a moment or two. Far too often, I find myself stuck in a perfectionism of my own making or trapped in a canyon of comparison far wider and deeper than I care to admit.
I truly am my own worst enemy and I suffer from soul amnesia often.
Here’s the funny thing. I know the secret. I know the secret the apostle Paul mentioned when he said, “I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation….”
in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
I am so quick to think “it’s not enough” or “I am not enough” and so slow to say “thank You, LORD, for what I have from You” or “thank You, LORD, for who I am in You.”
So, I am writing this to remind myself…
when you lose contentment, give thanks.
When you have nothing left, give thanks.
It’s the secret.
Contentment comes with thanksgiving.