Sunday, September 13, 2015

Contentment Isn't Synonymous with Idleness

The other day, I asked a dear friend, 
"How do I straddle contentment and a fire in my belly?" 
Her wonderful response to me was, "Contentment isn't synonymous with idleness." I was stunned and asked her to repeat it. 

"Contentment isn't synonymous with idleness." 

I gulped down her words like a long awaited drink. Somehow I had gotten hold of the lie that to be content was to sit in my house, quiet, peaceful, doing motherly chores and at the end of the day sitting on a rocker, cross-stitching. 

Not that that is an unproductive or an unsuitable lifestyle, but for me- a type A personality, visionary, high energy, hard worker, multi-tasker...that life style is unreachable. I hated myself for not being 'content' under my definition of contentment. I can't sit still. I cannot help dreaming. I cannot stop hoping for... well, everything! (My husband just happens to call me his 'eternal optimist.') 

So, what has been my struggle? The struggle has been thinking that all my busyness is me not being content. I know people look at me and think, "Gosh, she's so busy!" Actually, people tell me that all the time. They say it like it is a bad thing to be busy, a wrong and discontented thing to be busy, as if I am busy chasing a dream that will never happen or I am busy trying to fill some void in my life. And I guess if I was busy doing that, well, yeah, I wouldn't be content.

So, what am I busy with? Well, I have a blog, a website, a little preschool, I home-school my kids, I volunteer, and I'm a mom who cooks three meals a day, cleans round the clock - you know, your basic mom. I'm always busy making something better, turning around furniture, teaching, writing articles, writing books, creating curriculum, and honestly, I love it. I find peace when I am using my God-given talents. I feel like each time I decorate a birthday cake for my children, it's honoring God. I'm using the talents He gave me to bless my children and He gets the glory. When I have the opportunity to teach my students in Joy School I am using my gift and love of teaching. When I write an article, like this one, and He has brought me to a revelation, I feel like I should share it with others and help others to be set free. 
Character Design - Busy Mom
picture from Dribble

So, I'll admit it - I'll own it - I am busy, but I love everything that I am putting my hands to. I'm not burnt out. I'm not stressed about how to do it all. It seems to come naturally to me to balance all this stuff. 

So, what's so wrong with it? The revelation is...nothing. Truly and honestly, I have finally understood and accepted that there is nothing wrong with me being busy. I am content with each day. I wake up and complete what I believe to be the task that God has put before me. Yes, sometimes I do too much, and then I slow down, but it doesn't take away the fact that I am still content. I love my husband. I love my children and my home. I have no regrets with the decisions we have made concerning our lives. And I love the visions the Lord gives me and I love working hard trying to obtain them.

Webster's dictionary says that "content" means: "pleased, satisfied, not needing more." I don't need more. I am happy with my life. I can't help having a vision for...let's say, a children's book. So, I find time and write it. I read it to my kids and they love it! I hope to publish it one day, but I am at peace with the timing. Contentment is a great feeling. 

I am content. I am not idle. 
I am just a contented mommy, who also happens to be busy.

"But godliness with contentment is great gain." 
(1 Timothy 6:6)

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