So last week I asked the little guy what he wanted to do. It was too cold for the playground so I made a few suggestions and he happily chose Target. As you know from past writings, Target is THE place to go with a youngster because in the toy aisles you encounter toy after toy inviting you to try them out. The words are actually there “Try me” or “Press here.”
It makes for a great 15-20 minutes of a kid’s greatest fantasy – to play with every toy there and hopefully buy them, too!
I think Callan had a bit of an understanding that his third birthday was fast approaching. And thought it will be here soon I haven’t made a fuss about gifts or even suggested he could pick out something. But it wasn’t long before I heard him saying “And I want that, and I want that, and I really want that for my birthday.” And the next thing I knew he added in “And I want two of those.”
I swear kids are born instinctively knowing how to wish for and ask for birthday gifts, not to mention making a Christmas list for Santa Clause!
So here I am kind of encouraging an attitude of I-want by taking him to his dream world. It’s obviously a fun place to visit but perhaps it can also bring out the give-me’s we inherently have inside us. What kid could possibly see all the goodies and not want to bring them home.
So fast forward to adulthood and we still struggle with the give-me’s, don’t we. We see the neighbor with a new car or we read about the latest lottery winner. We may know of someone taking a great European vacation or hear our neighbor bragging about her promotion at work that came with a huge raise.
Bottom line is while on the outside we may appear perfectly fine with this, often we are seething with jealousy inside.
The answer? To learn to be content with our circumstances, to learn to be genuinely happy for others’ good fortune, and to learn to be good stewards of our resources.
Easy? Not always.
Worth the struggle? Absolutely.
And in Philippians 4:11-13 Paul reminds us of this great lesson when he states “I have learned to be content no matter what happens to me. I know what it’s like not to have what I need. I also know what it’s like to have more than I need. I have learned the secret of being content no matter what happens. I am content whether I am well fed or hungry. I am content whether I have more than enough or not enough. I can do everything by the power of Christ. He gives me strength.”
Father, please guard my heart against any tendencies to want more or to feel like what I have is not enough. May I find my contentment in you and you alone.