It is amazing how quickly we can go from being happy for someone’s success to being bitter about what we don’t have. Your friends that are your age have a house, so you want a house. Your friends that are your age have babies, so you want a baby. You forget the plans you make with your spouse, and the visions that God reveals to you about your future, when you focus on what everyone else has.
Since a lot of women around me are having kids (there’s definitely something in the water!), everyone else has been asking me when it’s my turn. It’s crazy that right after a pregnancy announcement, someone will turn to me and ask if I have any news too, as if I would steal that woman’s thunder. But to be honest, when I see what everyone else has, I’m tempted to wonder why God hasn’t called me or my husband to be part of this baby bandwagon. My husband and I have a plan and that we are working on our marriage before we take any next steps, and that God has given us peace about this plan. However, the baby showers, gender reveal parties, and birth announcements on Instagram cause my peace to waver a little bit sometimes.
We see the picture-perfect family, the picture-perfect marriage, the picture-perfect house, and the picture-perfect children, and we want those things for ourselves. We don’t see the hard work and dedication that goes into keeping a marriage afloat and into raising a child to be obedient. We don’t see the fights, the slamming of doors, the screaming and saying things that you should never say to your husband. We don’t see the snotty faces, the sleepless nights, the times that you wish you could take back what you said to your child. We don’t see that God has chosen a different path for us, a path that perfectly aligns with His story for our lives.
Ultimately, if we looked down deep into our soul, we want happiness on our terms. We want a husband that we can control, that will perfectly fit our every need. We want a child that we can snuggle, that will be everything we’ve ever wanted and more. Whatever we lack, we think that will make us happy. But only God can truly satisfy our soul, and any desire we have that is not from Him distracts us from what He has for us.
I saw a skit that represented the blessing of God. A woman receives a gift that God had hand-picked for her: a soda can. The woman is so excited to receive the soda can from God that she tells everyone she knows about her precious gift. However, her excitement instantly vanishes when she sees what God has given her friend: a soda bottle. She begins to wonder if God really loves her, and what she did wrong to only receive a soda can.
The woman in the story missed the point; it’s not about what God gives you, but about the fact that God loves you enough to give you a gift that He carefully picked out just for you. You may not have what your friend has, but you have what God has provided for you for this season, and for that reason, you can rejoice.
Pray that God would renew your joy for the things He has given you. Think of five things that you are thankful for in this season right now, and thank God for giving them to you. When your friends share their good news, be happy for them, but don’t forget that God is doing wonderful things in your life too. You don’t have to have what your friends have in order to be content; you only need to have what God has provided for you during this season of your life.
If you truly are discontent about an area of your life, be honest with God about it. Tell God how you feel, and ask God to show you the plans that He has for you. God will show you your heart, your faith (or lack thereof), and where your treasure truly lies.
“Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.” -Psalm 37:4