My work isn’t done

I love words and quotes.

There’s one general idea I struggle with when I see it posted in social networks. Now I know why.

If you do a search on quotes about “contentment” you will find many that refer to appreciating what you have, resting, being satisfied, not seeking more. Those are great ideas, but I normally don’t feel that way honestly. I wondered if this was a personal growth opportunity for me? Is there a secret I am missing?

Then it hit me.

When I see quotes on contentment, my mind reads them as if “my work here is done” and therefore, why strive for more. “I’m good right here.” I know that it’s not what they specifically say, but it’s what I feel when I read them.

When you read through them, you’ll also find that they are primarily self-focused.

I absolutely appreciate what I have in my life. I feel blessed with so many people and experiences. I also have faith that God will provide what I need. I have moments of contentment, but they last just a few moments or a few hours.

emersonHowever, I’m not content in that way most days. I see people who hurt and need help. Working in the nonprofit community for many years, I know this takes funds to make happen, not just volunteers. So I want to be able to give more of our gifts and resources. And while we are at it, I would love to have more time to volunteer too!

Even closer than community organizations, I have friends that need a break, need someone to sit with them… even need a helping hand.

We have debt to abolish and remove that burden in our family.

My work is not done. So I am not content in a way that makes me say… no more striving. I am not in a season of rest in my life. That’s OK with me.

If you have reached that level of contentment, I think that is wonderful. I hope to get there someday too. I think a rest after great effort feels even more peaceful.

These quotes do resonate with me in this season of my life…

“The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But…the good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?”
― Martin Luther King Jr.

“If all our misfortunes were laid in one common heap whence everyone must take an equal portion, most people would be content to take their own and depart.”
― Socrates

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

“You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.”
― Zig Ziglar

“As long as there are ways we can serve, then we have a job to do.”
― Marianne Williamson

“You can find Calcutta anywhere in the world. You only need two eyes to see. Everywhere in the world there are people that are not loved, people that are not wanted nor desired, people that no one will help, people that are pushed away or forgotten. And this is the greatest poverty.”
― Mother Teresa