Whatsoever State I am
Updated: Feb 22, 2020
My blog has been silent the last few months. I have been in one of the busiest seasons of my life, and I haven't had time to devote to writing. I miss it, but I know it is always there- ready and waiting for the words to come spilling out of my head and heart through my fingers. At this time in my life, I only have limited time to get the basic necessities of life done; no time for extra frills. My blog is a frill. Writing is a passion of mine, but it's a passion that's taken a back burner to being a wife, mother, friend, and teacher.
Tonight, though, I was thinking and reflecting. The house is silent, and usually when the house is silent I like to think. I turn 39 in a few days, and as I quickly approach 40, I have been reflecting more on my life. One of my best friends was only 40 when she died. My dad was 44 when he died. When I was a kid, 40 seemed so....old! And now that I am almost to that age, 40 seems so young!
My life didn't turn out exactly like I pictured as a young 20 year old saying, "I do", to her knight in shining armor. In my mind, marriage was going to be a breeze, kids were going to be so easy to raise, and we would never want. Sure, we might be dirt poor, but we could live off of love, right?
I kind of cringe and laugh when I think of young Cassandra. I laugh when I think of my naive dreams and lack of knowledge when it came to real life, and I cringe when I think of my reactions to some of the tough times that came early in marriage.
"Why can't my husband just be like Prince Charming? He was when we were dating!" I would fume as I picked up dirty socks and towels he had left strewn around the house. I failed to remember the blessing that it was to even have a husband. The blessing of having dirty socks to pick up! The blessing of having towels to wash, and a washer to wash them in.
"What is wrong with these kids? They just won't learn!" I would think as I wearily went to separate fighting kids yet again. I lived in a constant state of exhaustion from being pulled in a million directions all day long.
My reactions were often short, irritated, and impatient.
Even though I was saved when I was a young girl, I have always had this flesh. And in the flesh, I battle feelings of discontentment, impatience, and anger. Life isn't all sunshine and roses. Life is hard. Marriage is hard. Raising kids is hard. Paying the bills is hard. Keeping a nice home is hard. Homeschooling is hard. If I start to think too much about all the hard stuff in my life, instead of focusing on the good, then I start to feel the wrong emotions taking over in my heart and mind. I think that's why Philippians 4:8 is so good to memorize.
8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
As I am approaching 40, even though I am the busiest I have ever been, I feel like I have finally achieved a state of being content. (most of the time) I don't let things ruffle me as much as I used to. I used to have to clean for a week before allowing anyone to step foot in my house. Now, I sweep the floor and call it good. Sure, my house is messy. We happen to live in it, so messes happen. I don't panic when I have a crazy week ahead. I have had crazy weeks before, and lived to tell about it. I'll survive. I try not to focus on my entire year, just one day at a time. If I focus on one day at a time, I can keep things in perspective.
I have lived to see some of my worst fears come true. I have lost a parent at one of the most critical times of my life- at age 17. I have lost a best friend to cancer. I have seen our church and my husband face critics and naysayers, and yet still stand strong on their beliefs. I have seen his name and mine drug through the mud. I have been called the worst names you can call a lady, with absolutely no truth or basis for the accusations. When I was a teen, I always heard preaching on having a good name and a testimony. I never wanted to be the teen that messed up, got involved in sin, and ruined their good name. I married pure, to a pure guy, and did everything the right way, yet I am still accused of horrible things that have never happened. Seeing that, it makes one thing clear to me- good name aside, I want to live my life in such a way that it will bring joy and happiness to one person only- and that is Jesus Christ. It doesn't matter what the naysayers say, as long as my Lord is happy and pleased with me. I will continue to serve him the best I know how. My heart's desire has always been to him and him alone, but even more so the older I get. As you come through one battle, only to face another, you learn that Jesus is the only true, constant, unchanging thing. People will let you down, friends will let you down, but Jesus never will.
Whatsoever state I am.
When I am broke, I will be content.
When I face attacks, ridicule, and scorn, I will be content.
When I don't feel loved, I will be content.
When my kids are all puking and I am coming down with the same thing, I will be content.
When my dryer breaks for the third time in a year and I have to buy a new one, I will be content.
When I am so busy I can't even breathe, I will be content.
When I feel unappreciated by everyone, I will be content.
When another friend fails me, (as I am sure I have failed my friends) I will be content.
When life is just plain hard, I will be content.
Whatever comes my way....
I can choose contentment, and today, I choose it. Tomorrow I will choose it. My life isn't perfect. I am a perfectly messy person living a messy life. But this one thing I know. I can choose if I am happy or miserable, and being content plays a huge part in that.
So, in whatsoever state I am, therewith, I am content.
It is enough.