Often when we talk about contentment we are thinking about being content with material things or wealth. Our culture promotes discontentment and people are constantly trying to fill their lives with things in an attempt to make them happy or fulfilled.
But it’s not just money or a bigger house that we get wishing for, it can be our present situation in life, our role, our job. More specifically our mothering role.
I went through a tough few weeks with the girls a month ago, and it seemed like it would never end. They were testing boundaries, pushing my buttons, not getting alone with each other, and of course teething (which meant not the best sleeps at night for any of us).
I knew it was just a season, that it would end eventually, and that it was, all-in-all, fairly normal behaviour for 21 month-olds to have.
However, there were occasional moments I found myself longing for the carefree days of the past before I had children, dreaming about how nice it will be once they leave home, and on the really bad days, wishing I could just run away from home.
It’s a good thing we don’t (or shouldn’t!) live by our feelings of the moment though! The reality is that I love being a SAHM and I feel very strongly that it’s my calling to be here with my kids at this young age, teaching and training them.
But we can all forget our mission from time to time, and I can admit now that I was trying to do it on my own strength and wasn’t taking the time to refocus and recharge like I should have.
Thankfully, I had a good reminder one night as I was reading over some old journals from my single years, in which I wrote how I longed for the life I’m now living-being a wife and mom. I realized that here I was living my calling, and having a pretty bad attitude about it. No one ever said it was going to be easy, this mothering thing, and here I was, wishing it away.
A few days after that I read a few different articles that talked about how as moms, we need to see our mothering role for the valuable thing that it is. Not something a season of life to “just get through”, but a precious time to be enjoyed and cherished in the moment for the blessing that it is.
It’s a blessing because it makes us better. It’s a fire that refines us. We need God’s grace to do it, and the tests and challenges are many. But through that we grow and become more like Christ. And through that we have joy.
We need to be content in whatever season of life we’re in. Its was hard to be content when I was single and wishing to be married. It was hard to be content when I was married and wanting a baby. It will probably be hard to be content when I am older and wishing for these younger days again.
The point is that contentment is something we need to have all the time. Wherever we are in life. It’s trusting God has us where He wants us, and acknowledging that He is enough for us wherever we are.
It’s a lesson I’m still learning, but I do know this, that when I’m content, I’m at peace in my heart. And a peaceful mama is joyful mama. A mama who wants to be where she is. And children can sense that you want to be there.
Are you content in the season of life you are in? Do you have bad days that make you wish you were somewhere else? If so remind yourself of these verses and take them to heart!
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 everything through him who gives me strength. – Philippians 4:12-13 (NIV)