Friday, October 8, 2010

The Search for Contentment

The day stretches out ahead of me as I get up, dressed and run over the many things I need to do, should get done, and really want to do. The cooler weather calls for me to come out and play. A dirty house demands I stay home and take care of responsibilities. Words circle around my head like a tempest, dancing and spiraling and begging to get out.

And I'm left in a state of confusion... what should I do with myself?

I feel like a fly that's zooming along haphazardly, only to find itself tangled up in a silken, almost invisible web and I have no idea what to do next.

I want to be effective. I want to get things done instead of looking back at another wasted day. Most of the time my day is wasted by tripping over myself with worries, frets that I can't do this or that right, the words wont come and if they do they'll be all jumbled and make no sense.

My self-confidence deflates. And once again, I'm having to stop to clean up some mess of myself.

Then I ask God, "What should I do? What do you want from me?"
And I know, He's already told me and for some reason, I can't make myself follow through with His directions. They're risky. What if I fail? What if someone gets upset with me? I'll mess it up. I won't... I can't... I'm hopeless.


I don't know why I have to put myself through all that. I know, without a doubt, that when I walk in God's will, everything eventually works out.

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
I know this is true. So why do I still struggle? Still doubt?

I saw the movie Eat, Pray, Love a month back and it really intrigued me. Yet I left the theater knowing something was missing in the movie that there had to be more to why she did what she did. Why did she travel the world on a spiritual journey. What was she searching for and did she really find it and how did she find it? The book, is answering those questions and I'm rather enjoying it.

Her journey to finding a connection to God is interesting. Not the course I would personally take, but each of us have to find our own path to Him.

The other day, I was reading toward the end and was struck by this paragraph:

"The search for contentment is, therefore, not merely a self-preserving and self-benefiting act, but also a generous gift to the world. Clearing out all your misery gets you out of the way. You cease being an obstacle, not only to yourself but to anyone else. Only then are you free to serve and enjoy other people." Elizabeth Gilbert from Eat, Pray, Love.

It made me think. I clog myself from being productive not only for myself, but my family and my world. Allowing my self-doubts and depression to grab me and shake me up stops me from being all God has created me to be in this time and place. I'm here for a reason. We all are. Some have big, enormous reasons, some small, unnoticed reasons. But there's a plan and purpose all the same.

When I have my eyes on me, I'm going to stumble and fall. When I have my eyes on the road ahead, on Him, I'll not trip and He will catch me if I do. It's about putting my trust in God and His ways.

Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord, "and will bring you back from captivity." Jer. 29:12-14
Lord, set me free from myself so that I can live in freedom and be all that you've created me to be. Amen.

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