Don’ Worry, Be Happy

((a blog on contentment))

This has been building over a few days now… and I’m not exactly sure how to broach the topic… so why don’t I just peg it, like usual?  Okay…

Why do people act like you have to be content with what you have in order to be ‘godly’?  What is UP with that?  Like dissatisfaction is a ‘bad thing’ or something?  I know that being thankful for what you have is in scripture, but I don’t recall EVER reading that we should be content with who/where/what we are, and should just sit on our thumbs and spin for a few decades.  Where does this mentality come from, anyhow?  And it’s handed off on us with SUCH damn piousness…  “you should be content with what the Lord has given you.”  Long nose looked down and disapproving scowl accompanying the statement.

Okay, well, here’s an example of why this burns my butt.  When Brian was a nonnie covered (ineffectively) by the sinner’s prayer, he felt that he was ‘good enough’.  He prayed the prayer, he was “saved”… he was a ‘good man’… that was enough for him.  He was content with his level of spirituality.  Is this a good thing?  ((this is the place where you insert a ‘no’.))  Is Christ content with a one-time prayer that is used as a ticket to gain admission to Heaven?  ((rinse and repeat.))  Thank you.

The Bible says we should be ‘striving’ toward the prize, ‘pressing’ toward the mark, ‘running’ the race, ‘fighting’ the fight.  Right?  We have something to aim for, and we *shouldn’t* be content to just sit in a pew every other Sunday or so and keep a Bible up on the bookshelf.  We shouldn’t be content with what we have… because there’s so much more.

It’s not just spiritual, either.  When I married Brian, he was content to spend every night in his bedroom watching mind-numbing television from 7pm until whatever point he fell asleep.  He was content with sleeping until noon.  I don’t operate that way (in case you haven’t noticed).  When I saw the man zoning in front of Star Search, I about gagged, grabbed his arm, and ran out the door to bronze his Addam’s-Family-white hide.  There are hours to fill, days to utilize, games to play, adventures to take.  Should we all hole up in a basement with a TV?  Is contentment with that a good thing?  Ack, the lack of movement, the health issues, the lack of anything to SHOW for yourself, for your LIFE…!!!  Am I nuts for living life instead of watching it on a boob-tube?  Hello!  There’s so much more!!!

That’s not to say we can’t be joyful whatever point in life we’re at, right?  Being joyful and being content are two different things.  I can have a HOPPER full of goals and aims for my life, and still be joyful inn what I’m currently doing.  There’s a difference.  But is it a good thing to opt for complacency in the name of ‘contentment’?

I dunno.  I’ve been thinking about it, because of this whole moving thang, lately.  Am I wrong not to be content with where I am?  We’re sinking in debt.  We’re a 2-hour round trip from doctors, family, entertainment, Brian’s work, stores, and life.  We aren’t making ends meet – we rely on bonuses and extra-long months (with an additional paycheck) to ‘catch us up’.  It’s not a good thing.  We don’t have the means to go have the fun we would like to.  We don’t even have the means to maintainwhat we have at this point.  Is it ‘bad’ that I’m not content with that?  Is it wrong that I don’t like where I am and want so much more?

((Actually, so much less.  I want less payments, smaller home, less debt, less travel, less wear on vehicles, and consequently more time, more fun, more funds, closer to family/friends, less stress.))  It’s not that I’m not joyful, mind you.  I’m a pretty exuberant person, most of the time.  ((Pisses people off, frankly.))  But y’know… I don’t see anything wrong with wanting to improve one’s situation.  With having goals and dreams and working, striving, pressing, fighting to make them come true.  Why is that a negative thing?  Most people would COMMEND the poverty-level ethnic girl who works hard to get good grades, put herself thru medical school and saves thousands of lives… right?  So why is it a negative thing for a little blonde housewife to work hard to get rid of the ‘baggage’ that keeps her from spending time with her husband, from being debt-free, from being closer to those she loves and the places her family enjoy?  Why is being ‘discontented’ a bad thing?

I dunno.  It’s easy to say ‘don’t worry, be happy’… but when things aren’t right, to sit back and let them build and build until there’s no escape… it doesn’t seem smart to me.  Contentment just seems highly overrated or something.  If I were content with where I was six years ago, I wouldn’t know half of what I know, wouldn’t have done have the things I’ve done, and wouldn’t have half the experiences I now have.

So here’s the question… are you content with where you are?  Do you think contentment is a good thing?  Do you know what I’m saying here…?

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