What's the big deal about Young Living

On Contentment

When I was a girl, I used to dream longingly of having a sidewalk in front of my house where I could roller skate or ride my bike or play hopscotch. In my daydreams, I would play on that sidewalk with my neighbor who lived right next door.  So close, in fact, that we could whisper secret plans to each other from our bedroom windows.

You see, I grew up in the country. There were no sidewalks, only gravel roads. I didn't have roller skates because nobody roller skates on a gravel road. There was no neighbor right next door, only a pasture and a barn.

I remember hearing about other kids getting an allowance and I thought that parents in the country must not know they were supposed to pay their kids for doing the dishes, and I guessed my parents hadn't heard that neighborhood kids never had to hoe the garden or feed the chickens.

I remember thinking that I would never live in the country when I grew up. I wanted sidewalks and next door neighbors! The good life!

What I didn't know then was that there were other little girls who dreamed longingly of riding horses and petting kittens in a hayloft and finding eggs in the hen house. All of the things that were part of my life were things that other people were wishing they could have, just like I was wishing for what they had.

Isn't that the way it is all too often? We look at what others have, sanitize it, romanticize it, and then spend our time wishing we had it?

The truth is, "the heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" (Jer 17:9)

I guess that's why the apostle Paul reminded us that "godliness with contentment is great gain". (1 Tim 6:6) God knew that the human heart would be tempted to covet our neighbor's possessions, and we are reminded to learn to be content no matter what the circumstances. (Phil 4:11)

Notice Paul says, "I have learned  to be content..." Yes, it is a learning process.

I'm still learning. How about you?

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  1. Any ideas on ways to encourage our kids in the path of contentment?

  2. Very well said:) I am still learning too! It is easy to covet what someone else has and to think that somehow what they have is better. I’m learning to be content with the gifts God has given me by cherishing each moment for what it is…not what it could be or what I wish it was:)

  3. Love you!

  4. Thanks for this post, Connie. It comes at a time when I am struggling to be content with being the mother of a difficult boy who has a (recently diagnosed) disability. It’s hard. And I am struggling to find the smallest, slightest trace of contentment in my situation. I do find myself looking at the families all around us who don’t have the struggles we have right now, and I think, “That’s what I requested. Not this. I want that.” I know every family has its own struggles, and it’s helpful to me to know that apparently I’m not the only one who hasn’t learned to be content where she is.

  5. I am finding it hard to be content. We always think the grass is greener on the other side. As adults we have learn that is not. I grew up in the country. My father lay a cement slab so as little girls we could roller skate. I wish my kids could enjoy country life. As a military family it may never happen. What an awesome post and thanks for sharing.

  6. Yep it’s sure a learning process. I was thinking that very thing when I was talking to my son yesterday about contentment, and how easy it is for us to fall into the sin of coveting……yes, talking to my son, and talking to myself.
    Love, Anne x

  7. This is such a good reminder, Connie! To me, it’s a matter of being faithful where we’re at and not always waiting for “what’s next” or what we might like. The verse from I Timothy is one of my favorites – and so convicting. Thanks!

  8. Beautiful post, Connie.

  9. Great post! I grew up in the country but not on a farm but with a huge garden to weeds LOL and now married with my own family have a small garden to weed and few chicken and still dream of living on a farm, maybe one day Lord willing :-)

    I love the “learn to be content” because it is indeed a learning process! have you read “Calm my anxious heart from I think Linda Dillow”? I remember having a lady’s bible study about 5 years ago and the very same topic of contentment and that “learn to be content” context was first introduce to me and did change my perceptive on things, yet I’m still very much learning everyday!

  10. I think we all struggle with being content. I personally like to tell myself that …”the grass is always greener in another mans yard, but either way it has to be mowed!” I tell my kids that too. To me, it means that it is really easy to see what others have and to desire it, but they had to work for and earn it. We rarely fantasize about the work, just the end result. :)

  11. Might I suggest a great book called “Raising Grateful Kids” by Susie Larson. She’s the sweetest gal, a Godly woman, and her book is so encouraging to Moms. Great little ideas for parenting. :)

    • @Leah,

      Oops, it’s “Growing Grateful Kids” :)

      (I was one of her proofreaders before it was published and I thought she was naming the book “Raising Grateful Kids”. My bad. :)

  12. I also wrote on this very thing as I am in a season where God is showing me how to be content.

  13. I’ve always loved living in the city, but I have lately recognized discontentment in many other areas. I have to be content with my kids in all their distractableness. I need to be content with all the constant decluttering that comes with getting tons of hand-me-downs for free. How often I complain about the very things that are a blessing in my life.
    Just recently I was telling my kids how everyone with straight hair wishes their hair was curly and everyone with curly hair wishes their hair was straight. They were amazed that it’s a worldwide problem. 😉

  14. YES! I am L E A R N I N G………very slowly, but learning all the same. It is very important for a life with Christ. If we are focused consistently on what we do not have, we have no room in our thought life for “giving thanks in all things”. That is what I am learning.

  15. Thank you..
    Very well said..

  16. Wow, This is just what I needed to hear. God does have a way of bringing you what you need. Contentment…..that is what I need to work on.
    Thank you all so much.
    Love ya Brenda

  17. Many of us must be going through the same thing with GOD. Learning to be content. You know.. be happy with what you have. I’ve been hearing the words “appreciate” a lot lately. What do we appreciate.
    I heard on the Christian radio station last week something like this……
    Once we accept Jesus Christ into our hearts everything we have and everything we are is HIS. So what is not to appreciate. We just use the blessings he gives us for our purpose in HIM. Certainly puts a different light on my mixed matched furniture…not so new wardrobe….etc.
    So I’m learning to appreicate what I have…and he will give me what I need to do HIS will.
    Create,inspire,encourage. Brenda