Last Thursday, I talked about how I was learning to live a life of contentment. Learning to live in the present and be mindful of what God is saying to me.
What I didn’t talk about is how when I finished the post, my finger hovered over the publish button and settled away from it more than once before I finally found the courage to push the button that would send my words out for everyone to see.
I’m afraid to show you who I really am, because if I show you who I really am, you might not like it-and that’s all I got -Sabrina Ward Harrison
Many years ago I found this quote and it resonated so deeply with me. I carried it around, written in a bible study I was doing at the time and then carried it around, tucked away in my mind. It is full of truth, but it is also what kept me from stepping out. It kept me in that comfort zone where failure is not found.
I picked up a book at the library some weeks back. It’s called one thousand gifts by Ann Voskamp. I picked it up because the front cover says “A dare to live fully right where you are”. I started it last Monday, but had to put it down when it began talking about death. I was still raw from missing my grandmother. I had read it some since then and after publishing my post, I decided to pick it up again and do some back porch reading.
The sun and I have a fickle relationship. I need its warmth and rays to keep me on a happy path. However, I’m very fair skinned and I have seen the merciless hand of skin cancer as it has touched people that I love. We have a lot of trees, so there is a window of time in which I can sit on the porch and the rays will have topped the trees and can shine upon my face. I spend about 15 or 20 minutes out there reading and breathing in the air that is thickened by the heat traveling down in a direct line to my soul.
I pick up the book and continue where I left off the day before. The story speaking to me. This spending time in the present, being thankful in each moment for what God has placed before you. The beauty in everyday moments. I think about how this was my survival. This was how I survived the crushing, gray days of winter, this noticing something wonderful, this thanking God for that wonderful thing. The breeze stirs around me and catkins come swirling down all around me, landing in my hair, my clothes and around my feet. I look up and notice all the leaves that have sprouted overnight. The foliage was not this dense yesterday. And I thank God that I notice these things. That he is bringing them to my attention. I return to my reading and there on page 47:
I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. -Philippians 4:11-12
The words again. And right after I have written about them. I hold the book to my chest and I thank God that he has spoken to me. He has heard my desires and has seen my journey on this quest for contentment.
I am still learning.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. Romans 7:15
Contentment will not come overnight. It is a journey that I must remind myself to come back to on a daily basis. But on that day, in that moment, I am there.
Let your light shine!