You know…in the course of my life, I have had a lot of things go badly for me. They are usually little things…and they have always driven me nuts. You can ask my wife. She will attest to the numerous times that things I attempted failed…usually miserably. I am accident prone (to a certain extent) and when Melissa knows I am playing a sport or trying something that may be dangerous there is a good chance I will hurt something…or someone.
It used to really bother me when a project took much longer than it should…or I failed an attempt at a relatively easy task. But…I have noticed that my response to those things has changed over the years. I don’t get angry like I used to. I don’t throw things like I (unfortunately) used to. Now…it doesn’t really matter all that much.
When we returned home late Saturday night we did not notice the destruction the wind caused in our backyard until Sunday morning. Melissa noticed it in the morning and woke me up so I could share in her amazement rather than sleep a little longer (as if it wouldn’t be there an hour later). I threw nothing. I did not get angry. I did not yell. I didn’t really care all that much. Apathy? Maybe a little bit. I mean…come on! You can only take so much before you are desensitized. But…I think it is more than that.
I recall the words of Job 36:11:
If they obey and serve him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment.
I think the difference over the years is not apathy…but contentment. There was a time when the last thing I followed was the will of God. In fact…I tried everything I could to run the other direction.
When you begin to follow Christ and strive to live a life that honors and glorifies Him…you begin to realize how little a lot of things matter. Does it matter that our table was shattered? No. Does it matter that Maggie’s playhouse was strewn about the yards of our neighbors? No. Does it matter that my grill was thrown 10 feet into the yard? Well…actually that one does bug me a little.
The point is…when I woke up that morning and saw the destruction, I was not angered. In fact, I think I smiled and chuckled a little. Maybe the smile was one of joy knowing that Christ has been established as my source of hope…my sources of peace…my source of identity.
How about you? Are you living in contentment?