Monday, February 15, 2010


“Contentment is not the fulfillment of what you want, but the realization of how much you already have.” ~ Author Unknown

I believe there are things that we should never be content with, such as personal growth and seeking ways to improve the well being of others. But for me it stops there.

Contentment with gratitude is the recipe for peace, and strong relationships. I’m not saying that it is wrong to be ambitious or to seek success, however, if that “reach” into the future is robbing you and those you love of today, of the present, then it becomes a problem.

Erma Bombeck quipped once about the ladies who were concerned about their figures and turned down desert their last night on the Titanic. No one knew, nor did they imagine it possible, that the majority of the passengers aboard would drown that night.

We only have the guarantee of the second we are living in. And when we are gone, those most important to us will only have memories of the time we spent with them. Were you “being” with them in mind as well as in body? Or were you striving for the future? We tell ourselves we are doing it for them, but if death comes knocking at our door, then we have actually robbed them of precious moments with us.

I used to be discontent with my home when my children were small. All my friends were in nice new homes. I’m sure my self-pity and envy hung heavy on my family. However, one day I read about contentment with gratitude and it rang true to me. From that day on my children didn’t hear me sigh or complain. I made it our “nest.” A few years later we did build a new home. In fact, we have built several. But now, when our children and their families all gather in our home some forty years later, the only home they reminisce about is the old house in Sonora.

Are you discontent with your stuff? With your job? With life? I encourage you to make a list of all the things you are discontent with and then beside them write something you should be grateful about. For instance, if “job” is on your discontent side, write beside it, “at least I have one.”

Contentment with gratitude is the best gift you can give your family, friends, and yourself.

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