Contentment has always been a struggle of mine. I am an overachiever so I naturally have my eye on the goal and then once I achieve that goal it is on to the next big thing in my life. The problem with this is that I don't take time to enjoy or take pride in my accomplishments. I give myself a little pat on the back and then onward I go to face the next obstacle that is in my way. But lately, I haven't quite felt like myself. Nothing specific has been wrong but I have been feeling a little off, you know? I've been in a state of non-contentment and have been very unmotivated to start the next task on my to-do list. It's like I have been just getting through the day and the months have just rolled together like one long, drawn out play of my life.
This weekend, Raleigh and I did not have a single thing planned except attending a wedding in town on Saturday night. Other than that, not a sliver of anything was on the menu. It was the first time in months that we have not had somewhere to go or something to fix up around the house. So, on Friday night we went on a date. We had a nice dinner and then went to the movies. I love my husband so much and I am the type of person that doesn't mind staying in but it was fun to hit the town together. He opened my door and payed for my meal like the perfect gentleman and it reminded me of when we were dating. It was fun not really having a care in the world.
Also, another thing that I have started to do recently is running. When I say recently, I mean like this weekend but still, it's a start. Let me rewind this convo a bit and let you know that growing up, I always ran. I was a soccer player so I was constantly running to condition myself for the sport. In college, I loved to go on short runs around the neighborhoods close to campus. When I lived in Birmingham, I had friends that ran half-marathons and I decided that was a goal that I would like to accomplish. So, I joined a sweet friend in her running club. They ran three miles in the blink of an eye and for the first time in my life I wasn't in first place. Not even a close second place. I was shocked that I couldn't keep up with them! Eventually, I started to run at my own pace and when we moved down to Montgomery I promised myself that I would continue to run to train for the big half marathon in Birmingham this past February. Well, while I was training, I ran in two 5k's here in town. They were in November and December and I was miserably cold. I mentally broke down and couldn't even finish the races without walking.
Not being able to achieve that goal was so frustrating to me. I couldn't believe that as physically fit as I was that I couldn't make it through a half marathon. So, for the past eight months I have barely made it past a light jog. I just gave up on the dream of running a half marathon and started exercising in different ways. But, recently I have noticed that my jeans don't quite fit the way they used to and I have been feeling a little jiggly in some areas if you know what I mean. So, yesterday Raleigh and I took the pups on a walk to enjoy the nice crisp weather that we have had. As I was walking, I got the feeling that I needed to put a little pep into my step. All of a sudden, we were jogging. And it felt good!
Tonight, we went on a little longer jog. We still stopped and walked but all in all it was good exercise. My legs feel a little like spaghetti but overall my body is glad that I did it. I remembered what it felt like to just run. Not run for a goal but running for enjoyment. It was actually fun and not something that I dreaded.
Paul, while in the Roman prison, wrote to the Philipians to thank them for their gifts to him. He said, "I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength" (Philippians 4:10-13).
So, this makes me think that maybe I need to start to truly enjoy the simple things in life. Maybe I should take time to do the things that give me pleasure and not be so focused on achievements. It is by the grace of God that I accomplish anything to begin with so if I solely rely on Him to give me the strength I need to face each day then I can't help but be content because I know there is nothing greater than that.
"Put your hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment." - 1 Timothy 6:17
Till next time, let your light shine!