Feeding the Discontent Monster

I was mad. Discouraged. Ready to quit. In the span of a month, I’d been hit hard on every side—physically, emotionally, relationally. And to top it off, an area I’d poured my life into for over a decade seemed to be dying.

It wasn’t fair. Wasn’t right. I knew God was in control, which meant—He’d allowed all this. That was what frustrated me most. It felt as if He’d intentionally led me to a painful dead end.

These are the thoughts one has late at night, when sleep won’t come and negativity is fed by the predawn darkness. The more I thought about the events—and there were numerous—that had crashed into my nice, pre-planned, agenda-based world, the more upset I became. The heavier my discouragement felt.

Until I became paralyzed by inactivity. In truth, by self-centeredness.

That’s what it came down to.

Entrenched in entitlement, I focused on the have nots instead of the haves. With thought after thought, I fed the Discontent Monster until her insatiable appetite overshadowed every good and precious thing Christ had given.

The next morning, groggy, stiff, and still nursing a self-fed negative attitude, I opened my Bible and …

read this: “…For I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little” (Phil. 4:11-12).

Why had God allowed all these trials to hit?

Why had He seemingly killed that which I was so certain, over a decade previously, that He had planted?

Because He had something far bigger in mind than my comfort or momentary happiness. He was working in me, growing me, molding me, chiseling away the rough edges and loosing the death grip I held on certain areas in my life, so that I could be free to serve Him as He desired.

For I have learned the secret of living in every situation.

As I began to see His hand, my thinking began to shift, from the have nots to the haves, and I realized that my blessings far outweighed my challenges. More than that, my mission was greater than anything I alone could dream up.

But most of all, He wanted me to trust in Him and seek my greatest fulfillment and joy not in any task He may or may not assign, but rather in Him, the One for whom I was created.

Let’s talk about this. Where are you at spiritually? What are you dealing with? Do you feel as if life is knocking you down with blow after blow? In the midst of a trial, it can hard to see anything else. But I’ve found, when I focus on the pain and the hard, they only intensify. But when I focus on the good—on all Christ has given and is doing in me–my burdens lift and joy enters my soul. Might it do the same for you?

Feeding the Discontent Monster

I was mad. Discouraged. Ready to quit. In the span of a month, I’d been hit hard on every side—physically, emotionally, relationally. And to top it off, an area I’d poured my life into for over a decade seemed to be dying. It wasn’t fair. Wasn’t right. I knew God was in control, which meant—He’d […]

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