Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Struggle for Contentment

I struggle.

I struggle daily.

I struggle daily with contentment.

"What specifically?" you might ask. I struggle to find contentment in my singleness. There are days where I feel that I am content, but then there are other days where I plunge deep down into the desires of my heart, ultimately my flesh. I'm not saying that having a desire for a husband or wife is wrong, but if it becomes of greater value than Christ, then we have a problem. I recently wrote a letter to a friend who was also struggling with her contentment and let me tell you... I was convicted through it all. The letter should've been addressed to me. The letter reads as the following:

Dearest Claire,
            I am so proud of all that you’ve accomplished: your passion for Jesus and teaching the Gospel to little ones and being selfless in all that you did for others. Alongside your commitment to God, you’ve had other commitments: work being one of them. I know you’re a busy girl and ejoy being busy, but let me give you a piece of advice while you’re at college: Enjoy it. Although I’ve only been in college for a year, it goes by so fast. You’ll hear it from others who have graduated. You’ll have time to try everything you want to try. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. It’s okay to say no sometimes. :)
            Now, onto a topic I’m sooooo knowledgeable about: Dating. Okay, I may not be “experienced,” but I can confidently say that I am well equipped (but not really). First of all, you’re at school for a Bachelor’s degree, not an “M.R.S. Degree.” I know we’ve had these talks here and there, but I cannot stress enough how important it is to GUARD YOUR HEART <3. You don’t have to be in a relationship anytime soon. You have your whole life ahead of you. Being single is just as important as being married. Both are gifts from God. You can do things for God when you’re single that you can’t do when you’re married. The same goes the other way. I’ve struggled with this (and still am) and have used prayer to help me. So, pray relentlessly. Pray for contentment in your singleness. Do not squander the time God has given you. Continue to live your life as Romans 12 commands us.
            If there is any lust that you might have for any man, keep your heart pure by going back to scripture and the cross. Remember what Jesus has done for you: “he himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.” 1 Peter 2:24. I know there will be attractive boys and men that’ll come your way and it’ll be crucial to know who the boys are and who the men are. 1 Timothy 3 gives you an outline of what your husband should be like. Also, remember that it is the man who is supposed to seek you out and pursue you. Not the other way.
            Before you enter into a relationship, lets examine your heart. Is your heart content with Christ? Is it completely satisfied in Him alone? Is Christ the focus of your life? I truly believe that until one is completely satisfied in Christ, then he or she can have a God-honoring relationship.
            I love you sooooo much. I cannot wait to see what the Lord has in store for you. Again, I am so proud of you. Cling to Christ. Seek Him. Love Him.
                Hannah P.

Every time I reread this letter, it's a slap across the face. I struggle with guarding my heart. I often let these "crushes" occupy my mind. The desires of my flesh become overwhelming and I begin to feel discontentment in my life. In times that I should be praying, I thinking about what my life could be like with this other person, hoping that my desires would become a reality. I take away from God's time and squander it on the desires of my flesh. 
Thankfully, I've combatted these desires with discipleship from others and prayer, which has helped me tremendously. One of the things that was hardest for me to pray for was that if this desire wasn't of God that he would take this desire away. God has been gracious and has pointed me to his cross. He has reminded me that he is sufficient. 
I know that if it be God's will for me to get married, he will provide a husband for me. A husband that meets all my needs and more. 

A few helpful videos:
This video with Matt Chandler is a very good reminder and also helpful:
Basically, he sums up everything that I've typed up in this blog.

"Should Women Pursue Men?"

Remember God's love. His love in that he sent his only Son to die on a cross for our sins. To suffer in our place. To feel the wrath that we so very much deserve. Christ has paid for my soul. I need to cling to my salvation, trust in Him completely and continue to preach the gospel to myself and look to the cross daily. This is the reality.

I hope this blog has been helpful to you. Look to Christ, always.
I know I use this Bible verse a lot, but it holds a lot of meaning.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10


  1. Nicely written Hannah. We love and miss you and Claire. Enjoy this time.

  2. Hannah: dad loves you and prays for you everyday. Miss you and love you dearly. May the Lord bless you and take care of you well.