Here & There

La Republica Dominicana con Katerina

Contentment.

A beautiful, but incredibly challenging ideal, aspiration, and goal.  I remember being 15 on my first missions trip to the Dominican Republic with my best friend Catherine where we wrestled, talked, and prayed about “contentness.”  Even before we knew the proper word, we knew it was a challenge–there, we were with people who had nothing, yet exuded more joy than we’d ever seen, and we were distraught because we didn’t have cell phones, and our curfew was a humiliating 10:30 pm!

When we returned, we were all set to stand up at our church and share about “contentness” when minutes before, my sweet Catherine whispered in my ear, “Just found out that “contentness” isn’t a word…apparently, people say “contentment”.  What a friend!

Yet no matter what you choose to call it contentness, contentment, contentity, the root of the word is the same–a BIG challenge.

That’s why this week, I so appreciated hearing thoughts from Priscilla Shirer on the topic in her book, The Resolution for Women.  She has a graceful way of taking things I struggle and fail at and making them sound doable, worth it, and rewarding.  

A woman who resolves to be content, she says, “Looks forward to tomorrow with peace and ease and an appropriate level of anticipation instead of the frustration and hurriedness that often accompanies our glances toward the future.”

She finds a balance and “a genuine gratitude for what the day brings, all the while maintaining a controlled anticipation for what tomorrow may offer.”

And her contentment “keeps (her) mind clear.  Peaceful.  Settled.  Undisturbed.  Happy to be here, and when God determines the time is right, happy to be there.”


As the spouse of a business school student, who is about to be “there” for the summer, I can’t tell you how much I appreciated her perspective!

If you’re in the market for a new book, I highly recommend this one!  It’s filled with quick, challenging, eye-opening chapters!

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