I had a little bout with discontentment this week. I had been experiencing a season of being satisfied so this little wobble into melancholy and a “woe is me” mentality caught me a little off guard. My circumstances hadn’t changed; no cataclysmic event had taken place, but I was lulled into the familiar surroundings of “less than” living.
I think I finally figured out what was going on, I was once again comparing myself to other people. I had also decided that I could read minds, I assumed the worst instead of believing in the best. Whenever I open up my mind to a small trickle of negative possibilities, it quickly changes into a downpour of self-doubt.
I thought that I was over this kind of thing. I’ve gotten through the rough stuff, what do I have to feel down about now? Right? Um, no. Apparently, it doesn’t work that way. My contentment had turned into complacency which shifted my concentration from Christ to me.
When I look inward, I see lack. When I look at God, I see love. My perspective can shift so slightly at first that I don’t even realize I am veering off course. It’s not until I look around that I notice that I am lost, that I begin to seek him out again. Why is it so easy to listen to the lies of enemy instead of the truth of God?
I have learned enough over the years to know that wealth doesn’t guarantee happiness, and that more stuff is just means bigger messes; and yet, I sometimes crave more, bigger, and better. The trappings of the world take over my mind and convince me that my worth and value are dictated by my bank balance.
I’d like to blame this hyper-critical thinking on the negative self-image I wore like a shield for so long, but that is not an entirely honest assessment of the situation. When I inspect my thoughts more closely, I come to the inescapable conclusion, I occasionally suffer from jealousy. I have lived under the delusion that envy wasn’t one of my weaknesses, but I was wrong. My “that’s not fair” attitude is fueled by comparisons that should never be made.
I am normally the first one to congratulate a friend when something wonderful happens. I love it when the people I love experience good, but sometimes I ask “why not me?”. And I hate that. These little twinges of covetousness come when I listen to the whispers of the enemy instead of the word of God.
It’s been a humbling experience, rooting out the reasons for this most recent episode of dissatisfaction, but I am glad I took the time to look into my heart and figure it out. I still have so far to go; I can never allow myself to become complacent again. Active pursuit of God’s will shuts down the whiny little voice that echoes in my head. God never said that life would be fair, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad. I have a choice in how I respond to the things of Earth, I choose love for God, and not a lust for more from here on out.
I am a Christian, a wife, a mom, and a part-time basket case who wants to be a full time writer.