The Sickness That Lies In Us All
Written by Claire McCann
Stomach. Virus. UGH! That is what my entire week has consisted of so far. Thankfully not me, but my baby still has it after 8 days! This is obviously not my definition of fun! This week I've had many moments while rocking him that I'm making a mental list of all the things I need to get done. You know, all the laundry creates a seemingly endless mountain and 4 kids eating biscuits for breakfast leaves an entire buffet of crumbs under the table! Overall I've noticed some times when I've allowed that list to dictate my joy or better said, my enjoyment of the present.
I guess the deeper sickness I've found this past week has been in me. The way I can find something to be discontented by in every situation. Now, I'm certainly not saying that getting vomited on for over a week is enjoyable, but I know snuggling my little man to comfort him will one day be impossible so I have to learn to choose to enjoy the moments I do get (especially if they aren't ideal). I find we as humans subconsciously have this ideal scenario in our heads that must play out for us to really be content and joyful. Now, how many times does that actually happen like you imagined??!! Almost never, right??!! Why do we dwell on wanting God to change a circumstance in our life instead of FIGTING to find Him in the midst of that difficult or mundane circumstance? This is the sickness that has infected me. I'd bet it's infected you too.
Paul says in Philippians 4:12-13 "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 all this through him who gives me strength." How many of you after reading that are like YEAH RIGHT! It is so beyond our comprehension to realize or believe that contentment is a CHOICE. The more difficult thing to know and work towards is that contentment is going to be a FIGHT! We must learn to dwell on the things like Paul addressed right before that in Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." Are we begging the Lord to help us dwell on the right things and when we catch ourselves doing otherwise,do we make the choice to FIGHT to change those thoughts?
I am not saying this for us to now go to the extreme of ignoring a difficult reality. Some of you are in agonizing pain through the circumstances life has brought and this is an opportunity to first recognize that Jesus hasn't left you there alone but wants you to turn to Him so He can carry your load. He also gives you a future hope in eternity through salvation that cannot be shaken through the storms of life. He doesn't leave us there but gives us Godly community who should challenge you towards Christ and help you bare those heavy burdens. BUT THEN YOU MUST CHOOSE to set your mind on Christ and His goodness towards you in the gospel! This is the FIGHT TO KNOW! It is a FIGHT TO KNOW that He is enough in the lonely and mundane days! It is a FIGHT TO KNOW He is the ONLY thing in life that fully satisfies! We are pulled to all the tangible things of life and their accomplishments to find contentment and momentary happiness but as the wisest man in history said "This too is meaningless, striving after the wind".
Contentment will not come without a FIGHT. Lasting joy will not come without a FIGHT. The secret Paul talks of in Philippians is so simple if we are just willing to FIGHT for it. That secret is we must search with all we have to find the good things God has done for us and hold onto the good things He has promised us in the future. We must not only be content in those idealistic moments where everything falls together perfectly as we intended but instead FIGHT to remember He is what satisfies when all those ideals come crashing down. Above all, He is faithful to meet all of us in our times of despair if we are willing to FIGHT TO KNOW Him. Are you willing to FIGHT???