Monday, March 1, 2010


I’d been married about a year and was standing with my husband outside a Chicago theatre waiting for our car. Up drove a gorgeous, lavish car and a laughing, handsome couple enjoying one another hopped in and were on their carefree way. My brown eyes went green at that moment. I don’t really notice cars, but in that moment, I decided that if we had that car, we would be happy, carefree and laughing more. Obviously, to this day, I still remember that car and that couple – a pretty good marketing campaign for that car!

How distracting for my mind to get its exercise by jumping to conclusions. My assumptions could have been absolutely false; I certainly knew a car doesn’t bring the kind of happiness I thought I saw. They might have been miserable, or they might have been just as happy getting into a beat-up jalopy. Actually, that was my biggest assumption – presuming they were happier than we were because of their car. The incident left me to deal with a covetous heart that evening. What was I really looking for? A car? A perfect smile and grooming to match?

No, I needed to find what St. Paul talks about in Philippians and I needed to find it fast! God had helped him figure out that contentment isn’t about our stuff or our situation. He writes in Philippians 4:11: “Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.” That was the beginning of a life lesson that serves me well every day! Now, when I think I have to have something or want something to happen right now, I go back to that verse, say it out loud and my contentment peacefully drowns out the “have to!”

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