Resolved to be Content, Part II
As I’ve shared in a few other posts, God is teaching me about true, holy contentment. I’m learning to be content with the lifestyle that He has prepared for me as a NAVY wife, since becoming one seemed to be the farthest thing from contentment when this whole process was beginning. Even more than learning contentment, I feel like God is teaching me to not be stingy. Yes, I’m supposed to be pleased and happy with what God is trusting me with in my finances, time, energy, and friendships…but am I close-fisted with those blessings, too?
There’s a scripture that God is harassing me with (you know exactly what I mean with that verb if you have ever felt conviction from Him) out of Luke 6. This simple verse challenges me in my faith. I know it’s a promise, and for many this passage may be a “feel good” verse that makes you feel empowered as a Christian. However, this scripture does more than that for me. It makes me nervous.
“Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full – pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back” (Luke 6:38).
Jesus is promising me abundant, ridiculously over-flowing, freakish amounts of anything I could ever need and I am nervous about this scripture since it requires something of me.
How can one little command, especially one followed by one of the best promises the Bible can offer, make me want to bite my nails? I’ve struggled throughout my life because sometimes I feel in lack; worrying that if I give the little bit of whatever it is that I have, that I will not have enough or have exactly what it takes to complete a task at a future time. Whenever anyone talks about giving at church (not just money, but time or energy in serving), I immediately feel like I can’t make eye contact with whoever is talking about it. I feel challenged. If I give my time next weekend to feed some people, I won’t have time to do laundry, or cook, or sleep. If I give this offering, I won’t have money for that thing I need to buy. If I wake up earlier to pray, I will be tired all day long.
Am I the only one that struggles with feeling that?
Anyway, this scripture is challenging to me. But, it is motivating as well. The Resolution for Women is encouraging me to look at giving without fear.
“God’s gifts are overflowing. He’s not stingy with His goodness or ungenerous with His supply. When you chose to give, He promises you’ll have enough – more than you think – filling you back up with even more than you had to begin with. Not just a good measure, not one that’s been pressed down and shaken together – not even one that’s fair, equal to what you deserve – but one that is brimming over, unable to be contained by its recipient” (pg25).
Okay, now that encourages me. If God is prompting me to give of myself or my resources, my first thought shouldn’t be “Oh no!” Instead, I need to choose contentment and know that if He’s leading me to buy someone lunch, or to wake up earlier to pray, or to give patience and grace to my least favorite person, then I need to be obedient and trust that he will provide for me everything I need – pressed down, shaken together and overflowing.
As this chapter draws to a close, I must make the choice to resolve to be content. These are my commitments to God, myself, and my family. If you feel led, make them as well, but don’t make these promises lightly or half-heartedly.
“I do solemnly resolve to embrace my current season in life and will maximize my time in it. I will resist the urge to hurry through or circumvent any portion of my journey but will live with a spirit of contentment.”
Shirer, P. (2011). The Resolution for Women. (pp. 25-30). Nashville, Tennessee: B&H Publishing Group.