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Tuesday, April 22, 2008


The Internet Cafe


Christine from Fruit in Season


I admit it. I've always been a "grass is greener" kinda gal. There's always something out there somewhere that will make my home/homeschool/marriage/parenting better. To some degree this is sheer and innocent optimism:

  • The new organizing book will be that extra "oomph" I need to make me what I'm not.

  • This discipline technique will finally remove whining from our home dialogue (yea, right...).

  • This new-fangled gadget will help me want to get up and have my quiet times like I should.

See what I mean?

My rose-colored glasses (as my hubby calls them) are endearing in some ways, eye-rolling-ly frustrating in others. As I age I am seeing that my "habits" are not so easy to break. I am the way I am, and nothing short of a miracle will change me for the good. This is not to say I haven't changed, I have, and I'm sure more change is in my future, however painful it may be. My life with Christ over the past 14 years has given me many mountaintop experiences and time of drawing from those experiences when down in the valley. But the daily grind wears away at optimism a bit, as wind wears down stone, and I find that if I'm not careful I will pine too much for that greenery "over there".

While driving in the car the other day I heard a part of a sermon that stuck with me all through this week. The pastor (I never got to hear who it was!) spoke of the "devil's culdesacs" in our lives.

"The devil doesn't try to steer us on the wrong path," he said, "but instead keeps us in a culdesac for a while..."

Stalled. Not traveling where we should be, yet not quite involved in something we shouldn't. Maybe enjoying something "good" while something "great" waits for us elsewhere.

Yes! That's it!

How many little side jaunts in a lovely tree-lined culdesac have I taken, wasting away precious hours thinking of how things could be "better if..."? Oh, I so want to enjoy the moment and yet sometimes (even often!) I simply lose focus and drift off the main road in pursuit of that elusive something. Contentedness is just beyond my grasp.

I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation... Phil. 4:12b

My life is similar to yours, I'm sure. I slug it out, day after day, trying to bring Christ with me everywhere I go. Sometimes I rush ahead of Him, certain this next thing is "it", wanting to show Him when He gets there! Sometimes He's ahead of me, chiding me to keep up as I glance down this side road or that, wondering what's around the bend. He's patient. He waits. I come back from whichever "good" thing I've found to realize that the one thing that's important is to draw from Jesus, the Living Water, the source of all good, and be content in the pasture of my life.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss says that the "green pastures" in Psalm 23 are different for all of us, and different at each stage of our lives. The green is all around us, no need to long for what's in someone else's. Yes, there may be something wonderful to find, to bring healing and change to a part of our lives. But if it's not on our main road- if we have to turn off to find it- then it's not the time.

So what about you? What culdesacs are you tempted by? Walk past; speed up a bit. Find contentment on the path He's set for you.

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Blogger Julie said...

Great article. I told my husband the other day that sometimes I feel like we are sitting in idle, not going anywhere, but not turned off either.

Your post reminded me of that.

Thanks for sharing your heart!

April 21, 2008 at 9:49 PM  
Blogger Genny said...

I've been on a few of those "jaunts" myself. Great article! Genny

April 21, 2008 at 11:49 PM  
Blogger Monica said...

Thanks for your thoughts. Contentment is a daily struggle as I seek to honor Him.

April 21, 2008 at 11:56 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

Thanks for sharing, bless you.

April 22, 2008 at 12:47 AM  
Blogger Praise and Coffee said...

Great post, thanks!

Contentment is so beautiful.
Trusting that the Lord has it all in His hands is so peaceful.

April 22, 2008 at 7:54 AM  
Blogger Mocha with Linda said...

Excellent, wise words. I need to quit looking around and just keep looking up. Thanks!

April 22, 2008 at 8:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

contentment and peace... as spring tries valiantly to make its appearance here in Montana

thanx and shalom
gp in montana

April 22, 2008 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger Becoming Me said...

Ohhh the second post I read today about contentment. This hit right to the heart. Thanks for this. I'm going to check out your blog now.

April 22, 2008 at 4:20 PM  
Blogger lori said...

My husband JUST SAID the other day, TO ME...."the grass IS always greener on the other side...but HON, it still needs mowed..."

He is right....I often find myself looking into greener land!! HE has perfect plans for us...too bad we are JUMPING over the fence and MISS em'!!
I NEED to stop doing that!!

GREAT POST Christine!!
You knew what I needed to hear today!!

staying on MY path....
could you remind me again in say 24 hours???

April 22, 2008 at 6:54 PM  
Blogger windycindy said...

I tend to never be satisfied! I don't mean with material things, just life! I gleaned a lot from your writing.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

April 22, 2008 at 7:30 PM  
Blogger Missy @ It's Almost Naptime said...

Oh, yes. Life on the hamster wheel. I totally relate to this!

Thanks for being the Lord's vessel today Christine.

April 22, 2008 at 8:41 PM  
Blogger MorningSong said...

So true!! It seems like you and I continue to have similar experiences! You put into words what I have been experiencing!

Thanks for another reminder that I am not alone. Other people feel the same frustration of what is good, better and best!


April 23, 2008 at 9:13 PM  

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