03 December 2012

not a problem.

"Godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content."
-1 Timothy 6:6-8


I had a eureka moment the other week; I discovered that a certain shift of thought can help me walk through undesirable situations with more grace, more contentment, and less complaining. See, although I tend to view any unpleasantness as something going wrong, it may just be that it's not going how I wanted. And there is of course a big difference there.

Right now I feel out of my element. As mentioned earlier, I'm neither in my own house nor among my own belongings. My usual habits have been disrupted and I'm unsure what I should be doing with my time. I miss my husband, who has to spend most of his free time sanding banisters and cutting out moldy plaster.

For quite I while I was categorizing this whole situation as a problem, that is, something that ought to be fixed. That perspective caused even more frustration because I couldn't find a way to fix things, or anyone to blame for the supposed malfunction!

One day, though, I realized that I'd been looking at my circumstances wrongly. There is no error here, nothing to be repaired. It's simply the way things are right now. I may not like it, and I may choose to lament it loudly, but in that case the problem lies in me rather than in the situation. :)

So now I have begun to deal with my frustration differently. Instead of tearing my hair out with anxiety, wondering what I can do to remedy my "problem," I can have faith that God has actually designed this season for me and ask Him to give me patience. Instead of saying to myself If only we could finish remodeling the house so I can get back to the correct way of living, I can say This isn't my preference but I will choose to live fully in this moment.

I know nothing-- at least experientially-- about caring for a newborn, but I suspect that this mindset may help me in the upcoming and months of little sleep and lots of crying. After all, if I'm awakened at 2 AM and think There's something wrong here! This shouldn't be happening! then I will have a cranky attitude and struggle to act lovingly towards my baby, since I'll be viewing her as a malfunctioning part of my day (or night, as it were).

On the other hand, if I think I really don't want this to be happening, but it's my life right now, well, I might still have a cranky attitude. But I can also remember that God has assigned this baby to me, and that there is nothing "wrong" with the poor thing . . . she's just not doing what I would prefer at the moment. :)

1 comment:

  1. "Something going wrong may just be that it's not going how I wanted."

    May that be my first thought, especially when considering a sovereign Lord.