Being Changed by Contentment

As a homeschooling mother, the last 4 years, there has always been a little voice quietly whispering behind everyday.  That voice, while not from one particular person, has been created from a compilation of the questions people have often asked me. That quiet voice has included thoughts like:

Why are you homeschooling? 

Are you truly doing what is best for your children? 

Are your kids going to grow up and ask, "What were you thinking?"

Are you holding them back from what is best from them? 

Are you homeschooling out of fear?

While those questions are valid and need to be thought through and answered, living under them everyday is not healthy.  Especially, on the days when I am a cranky homeschooling mother, because then the guilt can really pile on to me.  The thing is too, that these questions have been answered, with both my husband and I being in agreement.  And yet, I've allowed myself to live under "this other voice" who never stops asking and is never satisfied.

I've been reading through Monk Habits for Everyday People by Dennis Okholm and I want to share some quotes, which for me, have directly addressed "this voice" and I look forward to a school year freed from living under it.

A comment by Henri Nouwen, "Wherever I am, at home, in a hotel, in a train, plane, airport, I would not feel irritated, restless, and desirous of being somewhere else or doing something else.  I would know that here and now is what counts and is important because it is God himself who wants me in this time and place. (from chapter 8: Staying Put to Get Somewhere)"

If you've read my post, "Taking Back Life" you know that this has been a theme for me this year.  As I walk through this area where God is strengthening me, I get to narrow down and actually apply it to specific areas.  There is such a relief and a freedom in knowing that I can be content right where I am at in what I'm doing.  The only voice I need to be answering to is God's voice.  So, I am learning to be content where I am placed.

But it doesn't stop right there.  God's purposes in where He has placed us aren't arbitrary.  He is shaping us and molding us in Him.  Any situation in life has the potential of affecting you and changing you.  As I stated, one of the times I hear this "other voice" more clearly is when I'm a cranky homeschooling Mom.  It would be much easier to run away and say, "I'm not cut out for this."  However, when I do this I am not giving God the room or place to bring about change in me:

Conversion and growth in character happen when we remain, not when we run (from Chapter 8).

Sister Irene Nowell said, "the daily willingness to turn and be turned together, the willingness to be a good example, to live every day in humility and wisdom and peace, praying all the while that Christ bring us all together to everlasting life.(from Chapter 8)"

These thoughts have brought freedom and excitement to me.  I am excited that God's desire for me is to be content right where I am placed each and everyday.  I am excited that I don't have to run (and one of the ways that I run is by thinking maybe I'm not doing what I am supposed to be doing).  Instead, in my contentment with where I've been placed, I can allow God to work on me, refine me and change me to be who He has created me to be.

Stability means being faithful where we are - really paying attention to those with whom we live and to what is happening in our common life (from Chapter 8).

"Many issues in our lives could be sorted out if we gave up some control of our environment and allowed God to surprise us by using the contexts and communities in which he has placed us.(from Chapter 8)"

In Christ,

1 comment:

  1. This post was very appropriate for me. I find myself entertaining the voice stealing what God wants to do through the here and now. I want to be content with where I am in the journey. I'm glad those quotes bring freedom and excitement to you. God bless ya lots! 


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