Monday, January 14, 2013

Cut it out? Cut it back? Or learn contentment?

Do you ever feel like you do too much?

I think one sign that I'm getting that way is when I feel out of control in my own house, and get even more OCD than usual over any clutter or cleaning that needs to be done. It wells up in my chest until I wanna scream "IF I DON'T CLEAN OUT THESE TOYS NOW I'M GOING TO EXPLODE" or "IF I DON'T SCRUB BEHIND THE FRIDGE THIS INSTANT I'M GOING TO RUN SCREAMING INTO THE NIGHT".

Yeah. Not healthy. ;)

I'm there at the moment.

Unfortunately, I don't feel the freedom or prompting to let any of it go. It's all good things, things that are important to me, such as family responsibilities, work, multiple side jobs that bring in money we need right now, book deadlines that are truly a blessing and a desire of my heart, multiple blogs that are more of a ministry to me than a duty, keeping the house up, spending a little time in the gym, etc.

We're also considering listing our house soon to see if it could sell and let us upgrade to more land...which means some house repairs, which means more clutter, dirt and disarray (temporarily).

And more swallowing helpless screams on my part ;)

Right now, there is a new front door just inside the entryway beside my current front door, and a frame. There's a new shower door leaning behind the current bathroom door. There's random swatches of white caulk on the walls and ceilings where my husband has caulked cracks and sticky notes all over to indicate paint or baseboard touch ups.

And I'm rocking in the fetal position in a corner, wanting to wait and open my eyes when it's all back to normal ;)

So here's the predicament. Bottom line - if we can't cut it out or cut it back or clean it up...what do we do? Deep breathing treatments? Massages? Yoga? More exercise to gain care-free endorphins? Permanent residence in denial? I've tried all those, besides the yoga  (freaks me out, and I'm not exactly bendy enough) and there's really only one solution.


Paul was in prison when he wrote his famous verse of Philippians 4:12.

"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."


Makes me feel sort of guilty for being so overcome by such petty (in comparison) matters. I'm upset because my house is being improved upon? Because my daughter's toys are so bountiful that we need more storage for them? Because my writing dreams are coming true and my financial needs are being met, even if we're all having to work extra hard to see that happen? Because my blogs are meeting people and reaching needs and being used by the Spirit? Because my family is here and healthy and happy and well and able to do physical labor and spend time together?

I know I posted about this last week but it's still on my heart. Still heavy. Still weighing on me, like God isn't done with this topic yet. I know I haven't reached the head of the class here.

Have you?

How do we learn contentment? I think it's about perspective. Paul had the bigger picture in mind. He knew whatever mess he had to go through on earth, whether it was in prison or free, with a full belly or with hunger pangs, he would be okay. Even in death, if the guards came that night with swords drawn, he'd be just fine. Not because he was guaranteed divine intervention, though God gave him that sometimes after all. But because he knew The End. He knew where he was going. He knew the last page of the ultimate story, and it had nothing to do with bread and water or meat and wine. Nothing to do with prison cells or wide open fields.

Nothing to do with overflowing toy bins and white splotches on the wall or ticking clocks or draining bank accounts.

It had everything to do with Jesus. Heaven. The final hurrah, the eternal bliss of being forever with our Lord, forever away from the temporary cares of this world.


To me, that's saying "I'm okay in this, because I know what's next." Whether that's good, bad, hard, easy, or in between.


  1. Great post! Something I feel us women deal with a're focused on the right things and spreading the truth for others to be too. :-)

  2. I can truly understand where your are coming from. I have these moments at least one day out the week, the feeling of being overwhelmed and drained. Some days I just want to hide from it all and the toys have taken over my house and it drives me crazy. Just being thankful for the simple things such as my kids having toys to enjoy. Learning how to be content in all the chaos is a challenge for me, but I have to stop, breath, and thank God for His many blessings because it could be worse. Great post and you are not alone we all share the same feelings. Be blessed