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A Big Lightbulb Moment about True Contentment

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From WorthyofLove who shared about her husband’s old text messages a few weeks ago…

April,
Wow! I just had serious lightbulb…..and your name kept popping in my head so I just know I need to share it with you! God has been working on my heart much deeper these days since I last shared in your “Share about Your Journey” post!

I became very discontented, and I started expecting things from my husband again, and things got seriously out of hand for about a month. But I did something I should have done a long time ago—I sought a counselor and began meeting with her and just trying to dig deeper into my heart. She first lead me to a book called “Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul” by Stasi and John Eldredge, who also wrote the book “Wild and Heart” which is all about a man’s soul.

There is one part in it that caught my eye – my spiritual eye – about how true beauty is a heart at rest and at peace in the Lord…one that trusts fully in Him and one that does not give way to fear. You already know because I’ve read it on your blog posts before 🙂 BUT, my heart SAW it for the first time reading this book and then this realization lead me to seek out also the meaning of having Christ within – having Christ as my true heart’s satisfaction – and about how He is our source of life within.

Well here I was recently, researching this and just seeking God about it – to know Him and what this means for me – when my husband decided to pick a David Wilkerson sermon for us to listen to together and he picked one on contentment! (TOTALLY GOD LEADING ME THROUGH MY HUSBAND!) We listen to it and Wilkerson starts referencing this book called “The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment” by Jeremiah Burroughs….. it was written in like 1645, when there was a major falling apart of the Church and people losing all they owned and people were just in turmoil everywhere. This man Jeremiah heard from God and he wrote this book and so I of course found it online (FREE!), and began reading immediately.

My jaw dropped as I read over and over the message and confirmation that:

a soul which has the capacity to commune and know God WILL NEVER BE SATISFIED EXCEPT BY GOD HIMSELF!!!!!

And on and on he talks about contentment, how it is LEARNED, how Christ teaches us it and the whole while I’m thinking of you, because I know that this is what you have learned in your journey. You have learned it and it has changed you!!! And it is the key to true heart rest!!!!

So I came to this point in the book where he talks about how the devil comes to those hearts that are DISCONTENTED, and tempts them, because it is the heart that is unhappy with whatever he has, or does not have, or what he wants, etc….it is that heart that will be easily tempted to sin in order to get what it wants!!!!!

Is this not the main issue in marriages?? Pride being the first—which is ultimately (sinful) SELF-love—and it breads this discontentment.  It leads to all the strife, complaints, and just the miserable condition of the soul and heart!!!! And I thought— wow…… if women could see this! It is also in James where he talks about how when we are tempted we are drawn away by our own lusts (or sinful desires)!!

OUR OWN LUSTS—e.g WHATEVER IS MAKING US DISCONTENTED BECAUSE WE DONT HAVE WHAT WE WANT!

I see it now…I SEE! I was blind but now I see!!!

When I am content with having Jesus within me – satisfied with God – when I realize that yes He is the ONLY One who can satisfy my heart – I am at true rest, true peace….and I am content!:)

If you have not read this Rare Jewel book, I reccommend it to you, the Holy Spirit will confirm in your heart all the work He has done in you:)

RELATED:

Contentment Comes from Having Christ As LORD

Things That Fuel a Spirit of Discontentment in Me

Security Comes from My Identity in  Christ

74 thoughts on “A Big Lightbulb Moment about True Contentment

  1. I have the book Captivating..excellent book. Mine is underlined and dogged eared..maybe I need to read again.

    This morning I am feeling the emotional hangover of a painful confrontation with my husband that occurred last night. It’s is a yucky feeling. I can guarantee how the morning will go…being ignored by my h.

    I have been wrestling on and off that it’s time to stop trying to fix my marriage and husband..and focus on my healing, finding contentment/ self worth in God, take care of my household, children, job, planning for my sons graduation, and leave my husband alone. I can be pleasant to him and respectful, but not expect and hope anymore that he will come back to our marriage.

    I can take care of myself and somehow sort out how to use all the mental and emotional energy exerted on healing my marriage..and direct it toward my contentment and hope in the love God has for me..and for my husband…..and let go.

    This is a very scary step.

    1. Hope Always,

      It sounds like this would be a healthy step to take. Not that you are giving up on your marriage or your husband – but that you are making room for God to work and you are not trying to control things or be the Holy Spirit or force things to go the way you want them to.

      I know this is a super scary step. But it is one that I believe we all must come to – where we realize that what we think we are doing that is “helpful” may actually be destructive. Your own strength, wisdom, and energy can’t fix this. BUT – God is so much greater! If you are willing to release these things to Him, and get out of His way, He may bring healing in time.

      I love the idea of you focusing on yourself, your healing, your walk with Christ, your household, children, job, etc… I know you have seen posts about this exact kind of thing from LMSdaily115 in various threads and from Humbled Husband and others.

      It is scary, but I think this is the path to sanity and wholeness for you. And if your husband is going to heal, he will need you to respect him enough to stop trying to change him and let him make his choices without your hands around his neck spiritually and emotionally.

      I am praying for you today! 🙂

      1. HopeAlways,
        I agree with April! I think you are heading in the right direction, as God is calling you unto Himself! He will see you through it all, and you will find peace and joy as your eyes are fixed wholly on Him!!! God bless you Sister!

        Love,
        Amanda

      2. Thank you April and Amanda. i am facing a very scary time as the odds right now of a divorce are looking like its going to happen. I have hurt my husband too much for him to ever trust me again. How will I ever move on from that? I know i have been forgiven…and I know that he has played a part too. Right now he blames me and will not let go off that. I feel sad for him. I know that our marriage could be so much better, as I am changing.

        I didn’t realize that I have had my hands around his neck…but as I see this written in black and white..its true. I have such fear with the long periods of silence…those periods come after threats …and then nothing happens. Sometimes I start a painful conversation, just to get something from him…anything for attention….He never compliments me any more..never asks about my day…nothing at all.Treats me like I dont even exist. I have to remind myself that his words and actions are a sign of the sick/broken condition of his heart. ( I am the one whose therapist thinks he has clinical depression/mood swings)

        Surprisingly this morning he playfully nudged me when I was reaching for my vitamins.Typically he is curt and stonewalls me as a result of the night before.

        Ladies..please pray for me that my walk with God becomes my #1 priority and that whatever my husband does or doesn’t do won’t shake me.

        Maybe i need to dig out “Captivating” again and study more on grace,

        1. Hope Always,

          He has his own stuff to hash through and it is going to take a long time to recognize that you have really changed permanently. He is very wounded.

          I’m glad you are seeing what is happening more clearly. I am glad you aren’t going to continue the destructive approaches you used before but that you will patiently wait and give him time and space and listen to God’s prompting about how to repay any evil with good.

          The playful nudging was a GOOD sign. I hope you smiled and playfully nudged him back. 🙂 He is going to be confused about what is going on with you. That is a good thing. Don’t take the bait if he tries to get you to trip up and go back to your old ways. Continue on being the new you in Christ. He will catch up in time.

          Enjoy any sweet little moments. Seek God first and seek to bless your husband but not to control him or the outcome. I love your heart and attitude right now. This thing is “fluid” it is not set in stone. God is with you and will be with you each step of the way. I pray God might give you a chance to become the woman He desires you to be and that He might heal you both for His glory in His timing.

          1. Peaceful wife
            I wrote the other day and was so delighted you replied. That was the first time I have ever written on a blog! In fact yours is the only blog I have ever followed. I can’t remember how I came upon it but I am so glad I did! I wonder if you can help me? I think I have a good understanding now of the message of respect. I read “Love and Respect” and “For Women Only”. Now I am struggling to really change. I know what to do in theory but I am finding old habits hard to break. What can I do? I feel a sense of urgency too as I have three teenage sons and I would like to be a good example. My husband and I are separated but are very much working on things and still love each other. As you can imagine four children and therefore a busy life is quite stressful and quite often I struggle with contentment. I have very much idolised my husband and our marriage in the past but am leaning on God and trying to reorganise my priorities. Any advive you could offer to helpe take another step towards a peaceful contented life would be much appreciated.

          2. Tess,

            I’d be glad to talk with you about this. It is wonderful to hear from you! And YES, your boys will respond to respect, as well. 🙂

            Where do you think you are getting stuck?

            Tone of voice? Body language? Motives? Expectations? Time with God?

            Much love to you!

        2. Prayers heading your way my sister. It is a hard confusing and lonely road we are on, some days all I can do is repeat, I trust u lord, I trust u lord.

          1. I tossed and turned all night. I fought with Satan and all the lies he was telling me. I am starting a very busy work week on 4 hours of sleep.

            Today is definitely a day where all I can do is ask God to help me. Over and over. And trust him with my marriage.

            I trust you God. I trust you God.

          2. April and others. .

            I how do I love my husband, stay hopeful for marriage reconciliation, conduct myself as a Godly wife…all the while knowing that he does not want to be married and plans to file for divorce?

            I know divorce is the worst thing that could happen. What a painful legacy to place on my boys.

            I need wisdom and literally a step by step guide on how to live in this manner.

          3. Hope Always,

            Woah!
            Let’s stop here for a second.

            Why do you believe that “divorce is the worst thing that could happen”?

            Let’s hash through this for a bit before attempting to move forward.

            Sending you a huge hug, my dear sister!

            Much love,
            April

          4. To me it feels like the worst thing to happen..it feels like divorce is giving up….giving up working on a marriage….giving up finding out what God can do…finding out what healing is possible..breaking up a family. How sad.

            What would God want to?

          5. Hope Always,

            Let’s examine this topic together. I am going to ask you to be wililing to question some fixed beliefs you may have had as we look at what the “worst thing” would be.

            Marriage is very important. It was instituted by God. He says He hates divorce.

            But, is it true that avoiding divorce at all costs is the most important thing and that divorce is “the worst thing” that can possibly happen?

            I don’t believe Scripture supports this idea.

            I believe that Scripture teaches that the “worst thing” that can happen is for us to be separated from God for all of eternity.

            Your husband’s salvation, your children’s salvation, and your knowing Christ are the most important things by far. This lifetime is short. Only a few decades at the most. But eternity is forever.

            Let’s also question a few more things you have said…

            God’s instructions to a believer whose unbelieving spouse wants to leave is – let him or her go. Don’t try to force them to stay. You are called to live in peace.

            If your husband wants to leave, you can’t stop him. Trying to make him stay will only repel him.

            If you follow God’s instructions to let your husband go if he decides to go, Why does that have to mean “giving up on God” or even “giving up on the marriage”? You serve a sovereign God. He is able to restore a marriage even after a divorce. Our God is no wimp. He is sovereign. Not our husbands. Not their feelings. Not their decision to leave.

            What if your husband wanting a divorce or actually going through with a divorce ultimately leads to salvation for him and/or your children or leads to great spiritual refining and regeneration for you? What if this trial is necessary to get to healing?

            Allowing your husband the freedom to leave if he wants to does NOT mean you have to give up on the marriage, your husband, or God. But it may mean you have to look at your thinking and be willing to tear out any unbiblical thinking and replace it with God’s truth that can set you free.

            Let’s trust God with your husband and your children and marriage – not your husband’s current very hurt feelings.

            You absolutely CAN be very healthy emotionally and spiritually whether or not your husband stays. Your contentment is about Jesus living in you. It would be sad if the family broke up, yes. But it can be exciting to see what God will do to heal things and to grow in the midst of the trial.

            What do you think?

            Much love!
            April

          6. Thank you April ..my husband is a believer. That is what I can’t understand his heart. It grows increasingly harder each day.

            The worst possible thing that could happen is for me to turn from God….way worse than divorce…

            If my husband needs to go..he is free to go. He is too wounded and full of his own fears to stay. If he stays he would have to face his own demons and I don’t know that he can or is willing to. He is content to blame me for our marriage difficulties and ridicule me for the work I have done on myself since this all started.

            I will continue to love him through this and let his hurtful comments and mean spirit roll off me. In fact he is in a foul mood tonight, I asked if we could ride together to take prom pictures on Saturday and then I asked another question, and he refused to answer..so I peacefully got up and left the room. In the past I would have pushed and pushed until I got some kind of response..which is usually a big blow up. I am learning to zip my lips.

            This is incredibly painful . He sleeps on a twin mattress on the floor in our bedroom. I can’t take much more of the rejection, disdain, and no interest in me.he hasn’t asked about my day in months; hasn’t asked about my family in years, hasn’t given me a compliment in well over a year. I am dying inside.

            How long do wives like me..who have been forgiven by God and set free….stay in marriages whose husbands say they have forgiven us..yet want to discard the marriage because too much damage is done. Gift has given me grace and my husband grace for many sins….I don’t understand why my husband cannot extend grace to me and our marriage.

          7. Hope Always,

            If your husband is a believer, he may just need some space and time to hear God’s voice.

            How long do you stay? That is where it is imperative to be abiding in Christ and to be sensitive to what God prompts you to do. I don’t have a formula for this. If a wife is dealing with abuse or a husband is involved in unrepentant adultery or has major issues with alcohol/drug/sex addictions, or is not in his right mind and won’t get help, there are times when it can be pretty clear that a wife may need to leave until her husbnd gets the help he needs and they are both willing to rebuild trust.

            But as far as specifics in your situation, God can give you the wisdom and direction about whether to stay or go. You are welcome to search my home page for “should I stay or should I go?”

            Your husband may still be too wounded and spiritually messed up to be able to extend grace. He may need to be in a “spiritual ICU” for awhile.

            What spiritual support do you have that you can reach out to at this time?

            Much love to you!

          8. Hope Always,

            Part of this is that your motives to be a godly wife and woman have to be just to please God and bless your husband, leaving the outcome up to God. Your husband’s current feelings are important, but they do not determine the final chapter. If you keep your eyes on your husband’s words and thoughts and feelings in this moment, you will feel and be defeated. Keep your eyes and thoughts on Christ and His promises and His presence with you.

            Fill your heart with songs of praise to Him, thank Him for everything good you can find in your life, focus on Phil. 4:8 things, only pray for 5-15 minutes per day for your husband and marriage and spend the rest of the time resting in Christ, enjoying Him, studying His Wrod, seeking Him, asking Him to change you, praying for others, etc…

          9. Thank you April.

            My thoughts are to love end bless my husband…with no strings attached….and of course leave the outcome up to God..

            I tend to stay stuck in ” the final chapter”..love this thought… I base my husbands moods and rejection as the truth and feel defeated 90%of my time. That’s the equivalent of living in darkness when the SON and SUN are shining radiantly in my face..but I don’t see it because I am stuck in defeat. I would call this a major codependency attack….yes that is me…

            Thank you April. Today I will ask God to change me, pray for others, focus on what I need to do today.

            Today’s devotional from Rejoice Marriage Ministries is about Patience..just want I needed.

            By the way..I have 2 sons age 14 and 17 and a step son who is 32.

          10. Hope Always,

            You have a huge advantage here. Your husband is still there! He has not left. He may be thinking about divorce, but he is not planning to act on it. How about rejoicing that you have a prolonged time frame in which to allow God to radically transform your mind, heart, and thinking – not for your husband – but primarily, for Jesus? Your husband will be a secondary beneficiary, yes. And so will your children. But your goal is going to have to be simply to seek Christ with all your heart, mind, and soul – and to allow Him to shine His truth into the darkest parts of your soul and to yield full control to Him.

            None of us know what will happen in 5 minutes. Much less several years from now. Jesus told us not to worry about tomorrow but to focus on today. Live in today. Live in this moment. Be the woman and wife God calls you to be today. Rejoice in Christ and in His 8000 promises to you and His desire to know you deeply and His ocean of love for you today. When you are lonely, turn to Jesus. He can fill you up to overflowing as you learn to let Him help you tear out ungodly thinking and priorities and idols and as you set your heart completely on Him.

            Then you can simply seek to please God in every motive, thought, word, and deed and to bless your husband. Not to get anything from him or to change him, but to bring honor to Christ. You are not a slave to your husband’s ideas and plans. He is a human. His mind and feelings can change. God is the One who never changes and He is for you – if you will submit completely to Him!

            As long as you attempt to find your security, contentment, peace, purpose, and deepest needs met in a person or anything other than Jesus, you will feel defeated. Those things are not found in anyone or anything but Jesus!

            When you look back one day – you will realize that this experience is going to lead you to the greatest blessings and treasures you have ever known if you are willing to do this God’s way and cherish Him far above all else.

            It will be a long, slow process. Embrace the waiting. Allow God total access and freedom to work in your heart.

            Praying for healing in Christ for you, your husband, and your sons! I believe God wants to radically change you first. Then, He will pour His healing into the rest of the family.

            Much love!
            April

          11. April

            I beleive God is already radically changing me. He lined up two very powerful healing groups and a women’s small group that have been my actor this past year. I was divinely forced to ask for help from strong Christian women, because I knew that I couldn’t walk this path alone..I found you and two other significant blogs/ websites that have brought me much comfort.

            …and I fall into making my marriage and husband my idol in a split second. I would love to know why I do this. The despair takes a .hold of me. I have to know that I can make it and that I am strong and courageous, whether my husband leaves or stays.

            If he wants to go…the greatest gift of my love is to let him go. I can also be thankful…today…that he is still here. He may be sleeping on a twin mattress on the floor…but he is still here.

            Today I pray for Godly men to speak into his heart..for him to soften his heart…and for me to let go and trust God’s plan.

            I have overcome alcoholism, an eating disorder, and exercise addiction. I can handle whatever happens in my marriage.

          12. Hope Always,

            I think most of us do this naturally – make our husbands more important than Christ and try to make them be responsible for our happiness and spiritual well-being, security, and contentment. We must guard against that. It is a big temptation. But the more you realize what you are doing and the more you yield to Christ, the more possible it is to be content in Christ alone and to recognize wrong thinking and not succumb to it. Not because we are so strong, but because Jesus is in us and He is strong. 🙂

            Plus, when you begin to experience Jesus more and more – you realize that nothing and no one can replace Him and that He is the only source of real satisfaction, contentment, security, peace, joy, hope, and goodness. And you realize you can’t expect that of anyone or anything else. That is so freeing!

            I praise God for what He is doing and what He will do in your life! 🙂

          13. April,
            I couldn’t think of a better way to explain exactly what this is all about! And I just want to confirm for HopeAlways that it truly is worth letting go, and allowing God to change us first is really the best thing we can do! Because when our minds and hearts are changed and focused on God alone, it will not matter what happens next!!! Amen, Praying for eyes to be opened!

            Blessings,
            Amanda

          14. HopeAlways,
            I wanted to share my own experience, as it has just happened in my own experience. When you said :

            “…and I fall into making my marriage and husband my idol in a split second. I would love to know why I do this. The despair takes a .hold of me. I have to know that I can make it and that I am strong and courageous, whether my husband leaves or stays.”

            This is the exact struggle I was going through this past month or so—I didn’t understand why I was doing this when I knew it wasn’t right and it was the cause of my unrest in heart. When I talked to my counselor about this specific issue, we talked about what the process actually looks like when I would turn my husband back into an idol. I realized that whenever I felt any type of negative emotion or unrest in my heart, I had to look at what I was expecting to bring me peace/joy/contentment.

            I realized that I needed to consciously ACCEPT whatever came my way in any given day/situation as God’s will and be thankful no matter what it was, and that I needed to praise God in my heart, and keep trusting in Jesus to bring me heart satisfaction, not my husband/child/etc. etc.

            Example- The day after I realized this with my counselor, my husband got a call to start working out of state again. My first response was “no”. But the holy Spirit quickly reminded me of my conversation earlier with my counselor. Instead of panicing and getting upset, I accepted it in my heart as God’s will and realized that He is in control, and He knows best. I thanked God that my husband even had a job, and I praised God anyway! And it was ok. Things were ok. I had to ask myself, “Am I trusting in my husband living here at home to satisfy me, bring me peace, joy, etc??? OR in Jesus?????

            It was very eye opening. It continues to be very eye opening 🙂

            I hope this helps!!!

            Love,
            Amanda

          15. Amanda…I completely understand what you have shared about things being God’s will.

            However..when my husband ignores me, doesn’t treats me with disdain, makes threats to sue, live in a camper etc…I don’t beleive that is God’s will. Or is it? Is God trying to tell me to get with the program and start seeing the obvious signs that my husband wants out…or is my husband under a spiritual attack. I have trouble discerning this.

            Today I got a hair cut..it is obviously shorter and blonder. He hasn’t said a word to me. It hurts like crazy to be under recognized, however tonight I was able to shrug it off and not allow my h. Steal my joy. But…oh my..does my flesh wants to scream at him. Back in the days when things were okay between us, he always complimented me on my hair cut.

            My husband is very wounded. He stays stuck there. My friend wonders if he allows himself to stay stuck, he doesn’t have to make a decision either way.

            I have to find a way to stay in God’s will or I will spiral downwards by making my husband/!marriage my idol. Because if he does indeed follow through and files for divorce…and I have made him my idol and not Jesus..I am in trouble.

            Thank you Amanda for your insight and love

          16. HopeAlways,
            I don’t think it’s God’s will for anyone to sin. However, God is allowing all of this to happen because He is Sovereign! It seems like you are still expecting things from your husband. If you expect things from him, you will be let down each time. He is only responsible for his own choices and you your own. He could be going through his own thing and certainly he could be being attacked spiritually. That is why it is so important to pray pray pray and let GOD handle your husband and you keep your eyes on Jesus! I pray your eyes be opened even more and you continue to seek God with all of your heart!!!

            Love,
            Amanda

          17. Amanda..this morning has been free.😆😆😆

            It has been a VERY LONG time since I have had a morning where I wasn’t disappointed or in angst because of how my husband has treated me.

            He never mentioned my haircut and I am okay with that. He treated me like a roommate..and I am ok with that. He admitted to thoughts that go through his head regarding a issue (putting his jeans in the washer)..he said his crazy thinking tells him that I am being vindictive and was able to combat that thought with giving me the benefit of the doubt. That’s a VERY BIG step for him. It felt good to hear him take ownership of his thoughts and not blame me.

            This morning I am feeling close to Jesus and I feel my worth and value in him..not my husband. I pray this feeling continues.

    2. My sister bought me this book recently and I started reading it, but need to get back to it. Was just feeling led to do that yesterday, so this post is confirming that for me.

      Hope Always, I will pray for you today. It is a scary step, but you’re in the right place. 🙂

      Joshua 1:9: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

      1. ContentinChrist,
        I have re-read it like 3 times, because the truths in it are so eye opening. God has spoken to me through it and has lead me on in my journey through it, combined with April’s blog, and it has gotten down to the bottom of everything for me and my life! I am so grateful! I also think it is amazing that you felt led to read it!! I see God aligning all of our stories and all that He is trying to do in each of our hearts! It is amazing!!! PRAISE THE LORD!!!!!

        Love,
        Amanda

  2. I have been having this same light bulb moment, and finding so much more peace and joy in Christ Himself, aside from anything my husband does!

    My problems come mostly when I am exhausted, but there isn’t much I can do about that. When my husband comes home late, and I’m already in bed, but he turns the TV on and wakes me up, or he doesn’t put his c-pap on and starts snoring which wakes me because I’m a light sleeper, and then he gets angry when I wake him and tell him that he’s snoring. I feel like there is so much inconsideration there, and I am EXHAUSTED and feel like my energy and strength are depleted and it’s so difficult for me to focus on God in those moments. All I can think about is how inconsiderate those actions are and how I just want to go to sleep!

    There are times when we make plans with people, and then he decides he doesn’t feel like doing it, so we don’t, and I’m left feeling incredibly guilty because I know these other people took time out of their schedule and planned for us, but we couldn’t do the same. I realize it’s not my fault, but I also refuse to pass blame on my husband, so I know I’m looked at as inconsiderate also.

    But, I am growing in the Lord and learning more and more every day about who HE is, about His love, His attributes, His desires, His commands, His story. Focusing on Him has been the greatest thing for me! I need to continue doing that and hopefully these other things will fade away, and hopefully my lack of sleep will soon be inconsequential too! 🙂

    1. That’s actually a great point; my man does the exact same thing, in regards to canceling plans last minute. I almost wonder if it would be better to just go without him? That way the full rudeness of his actions reflect on him and him alone? That’s probably what I will do next time.

      1. That’s not something I would be able to do only because we’re typically together when he decides last minute that he doesn’t want to do it, and he’d rather the two of us go do something else. Or sometimes it’ll be something as silly as a TV show that we watch with my parents; he will want to watch future episodes without them, even though they will wait to watch until we’re available also. Silly, little things, that in the grand scheme of eternity, simply don’t matter, and I am learning that!

  3. Amen! The Lord has shown me this again as I have been drawing closer to Him. Just within the last 6 months, getting back to the place of intimacy with Him I had before I got married. He truly, TRULY is our breath of life, our hearts desire, our living water! This is our greatest desire, but when we try to fill it with other things and not Him, those (other things) essentially become idols. Because we are trying to fill a void only the Lord Jesus can fill! He is SO GOOD!

    Such a encouraging post! This was the source of my marriage issues I had, I was trying to pull from my marriage to fill me, when only the Lord could do that.

  4. Thanks you so much for this wonderful blog about contentment. Never enough about this topic. One of my favorite sayings when I start thinking about myself too much is to picture what April told me once and that is to nail ourselves back up on that cross. I just love that saying and I envision it.

    Another great book I would recommend is one called Soul Cravings by Erwin McMannus. He says “Truth isn’t something you conclude; truth is something you become. If you would come to trust God, you might find yourself jumping into His arms every day. Blessings to all.

    1. Jennifer,
      I have to literally picture myself with nails sometimes and imagine nailing my hands and feet to the cross! I’m glad that was helpful for you.

      So grateful this post was a blessing. It blessed me!

      Thanks for sharing this resource.

      Much love!

  5. I have become very content in Christ, but very suppressed by my husbands discontent.
    It was so bad that I had stopped talking to him, friends had stopped visiting and so had family. He was super negative and complaintive. Told me I was never a good wife and many other hurtful things. He often watched debates on Christianity vs atheism… It worried me.
    As a result we have separated.
    I’m sad but can feel the peace of Gods love back in the house.
    I wonder if my husband was under Satans snare and God removed him from destroying my faith?
    Idk, but it only happened 5 days ago. I have mixed emotions.
    I miss him but that’s making me lean more God than ever before…..
    Xx

    1. Sheli…I am praying for you. I have never leaned so hard on God, April’s and other blogs, sisters in Christ, healing groups, etc as I have since my husband announced a divorce in July 2013. I am so sad that you have been told that you were not a good wife. I have been told the same…in fact I remember my h. screaming in the phone ” YOU ARE A SH***Y WIFE” i did the best I could do with what I knew….and I am growing now.

      Hugs

    2. Sheli,

      Hmm… he may be under Satan’s snare. I don’t know what is going on. Any mental illness? Depression? Addictions? You think he is considering atheism?

      I pray for God’s healing for him and for His wisdom and power for you to be the woman He calls you to be – to be faithful and obedient and filled to overflowing with Christ no matter what your husband is doing. I pray you might find support and resources that are helpful here.

      So glad you are leaning on Christ!

      Much love to you!

      1. Yes April, he actually suffered depression. Had many addictions but was not giving in to them hence he was constantly miserable and angry! He asked me if I would still love him if he became an atheist – I said I wouldn’t agree with it so couldn’t be sure.

        Thanks for your prayers for him- I pray for him also.
        God is already looking after me 😉

        Bless you !

        1. Sheli,

          If he is considering atheism, that would be very depressing! I would be depressed, for sure!

          You know, I think you can still love him even if he turns his back on God. I Peter 3:1-2 is your assignment if this is what is going on. He is not going to respond to lectures from you or preaching. But you can set a godly example for him in your attitude and the purity and reverence in your life for God. As you are filled to overflowing with God’s Spirit, that is a powerful testimony. Then you can trust God to reach his heart and soul and to open his eyes. You don’t have to agree with him to love him and honor and respect him as your husband.

          Much love!

  6. Beautiful, this really is so beautiful to see the Lords work in others lives. I’ve been working through a similar journey to contentment, that has seemed to be lacking lately. I’ve felt like I was under a spiritual attack, and discontent mentioned was at the head of it. Mine has led me to see that what was missing was that I wasn’t fnding Joy in the Lord. My Christian life was becoming more often a chore, instead of worshiping my God. There is a great series by John Piper on youtube called when I don’t desire God. I have been finding joy in the lord again, and it seems that contentment comes along with that. I can’t wait to read some of these books listed here!

  7. My biggest problem is ordering stuff online without asking my husband or ignoring his no answer. I see books etc online that id love to read and I think could really help me understand something better etc and I know before I ask him that he will say no. I feel embarrased sometimes at my reason why I want something, I see it as important and he doesnt or I tell him my reason I want sonething and he just doesnt seem to “get it” or understand how important it is to me. So in my mind I save myself the troubleand hurt i order it without asking. But then regret it once the item arrives. I dont do this often. Maybe 2-3 times a year at the most. I love to read and my tastes are different to my husbands. I dont read fiction or secular books. Just stuff about homemaking,child training, biblical womanhood etc. Would be nice to be content. My husband thinks those types of books can be a waste of time and I should spend my time just doing it instead of reading about it. I read about it to gain more knowledge and insight on how to do things. Not sure how to stop as I get really unsettked when I see something I would like and I try to resist buying it.and I know my husband would say no.

    1. Anon M,

      If you know for sure he wouldn’t like it – what is a way that you can maybe still research the topics in which you are interested, and honor your husband until maybe he changes his mind?

      For instance, there are probably a lot of blogs with free content you can read to get that kind of info, right? And then you can take care of your desire to learn about these important topics and honor your husband at the same time. 🙂

      Much love to you!

      1. Thanks April,

        Will try your suggestion. Just starting on this journey and ive already had to face some difficult circumstances for me. But I think my husband is noticing some changes.

        My only other question is this, we have a large family and because of that we have to drive a large van. This requires me to upgrade my permit to be able to legally drive that van. My husband drives large vehicles for a living and so he is best to teach me how tl drive and manouvure the family van. But he is impatient and can be harsh and cruel in his comments if I dont drive in a manner that he thinks I should.

        I try my best and try to make sure I listen and follow instructions. But he claims im not listening and starts name calling and loses his temper. The children are usually in the back as we cant leave them home unattended and I end up in tears and shaking and he ends up cross at me because I “dont get it and im a bad driver”.

        So we avoid it now because its not productive and causes conflict. So if I need to take the kids anywhere I either leave the older ones home unattended or my husband takes the day or afternoon off to drive us around. I want to be able to drive our large van but I feel like id be walking into otherwise unnecessary conflict. And I hate him yelling at me. Im nervous enough without it.

        Im trying to learn how to respond to his harsh reactions more respectfully, but dont feel strong enough in that area to cope with major conflict yet. I watched your video on fear versus faith and im unsure if my fear of conflict over this is just an idol and I need to bite the bullet and ask him to teach me again or if it is wise for me to choose to hold off until I feel im better able to cope with his temper. And it is not an idol.

        1. Anon M,

          I think that sometimes if something comes easily to some people, it is hard for them to imagine that it wouldn’t’ come as easily for others. I do NOT have good spatial skills and hand eye coordination. I would also not feel comfortable driving a huge van. And I would also not do better if someone was yelling at me about that I was messing up. I totally feel you on this!

          Does he ever apologize later for being harsh?

          What do you usually say when he is so harsh? Or do you say nothing?

          Have you ever attempted to say (when he is calm and you are not trying to learn to drive the van), “Honey, I know that you have amazing hand-eye coordination and spatial skills that make driving a piece of cake for you. I don’t have those same talents, unfortunately. I wish I did. This is truly difficult for me and it intimidates me. I would appreciate a softer tone from you. If your voice sounds harsh, I get much more nervous and am going to do worse. I know you want me to do my best. I do my best when I feel encouraged and emotionally safe.”

          Or, “Honey, I want to do this. I want to learn it. But I can’t learn if someone is yelling at me. I will shut down and freeze. We both want me to learn to drive this van. I would appreciate if you treat me more gently so that I can learn to do this thing. Thanks!”

          Praying for God’s wisdom for you!

  8. “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.” St. Agustine

    What a timeless truth you have shared! And it is so amazing how I have found the Holy Spirit to take me deeper and deeper into this truth as I continually surrender everything, including my marriage , to the Father.

  9. I loved this post. After many years of struggle I eventually realized that all my husband needed from me was that I smile and don’t complain. That’s it, that simple and he is completely content. Once I got that figured out, I was free to pursue my own contentment, which mostly comes from Christ. Men and women can be so different, so the idea that my husband just needed me to smile and not complain seemed so alien, foreign. I could never be content with that, but he is, my simply being content is what makes him happy.

    1. insanitybytes22.

      This is awesome. Thank you so much for this! I remember thinking Greg wanted me to just be quiet and smile all the time earlier in our marriage. I thought that was impossible. Of course, what he wanted was for me to be joyful and happy and to not complain and be negative. Joy and not complaining are what God desires for me, too. In fact, He commands us not to complain. And when we know Christ intimately, we will be overflowing with joy.

      My husband is very much the same way. He mostly wants me to be content and not stressed. That brings him contentment. Wow!

  10. ** I wrote a longer version of this comment on the post about “Things Got Worse…” from the other day. However, I wanted to cross-post my apology here, because I need to apologize to each one of you. I’ve shared more about the past few days over on the other post. Thank you. **

    Thank you, everyone, who has been praying for me. I would like to ask you to continue to pray, if you feel led.

    I would like to publicly apologize to April for my ugly attitude.

    I would also like to apologize to the other ladies as well. For too long I have been complaining, and dumping on everyone in my comments. The other day I was hurt (sinfully), angry (sinfully) – and I just let it spew forth. That was wrong of me, and I apologize……

    1. Becca!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      If I could hug your neck, I would!!!:) THIS is the kind of step forward that I have been waiting for. PRAISE GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      It is a LONG, LONG road ahead. There are many messed up old beliefs to wade through. But I am SO PROUD OF YOU and SO THANKFUL TO GOD for empowering you to begin to do this hard work and to turn to Him and to be open to the possibility that the old ways of thinking need to go and that it is time to rebuild on God’s Word.

      THANK YOU for your courage and humility in apologizing to everyone. I certainly accept your apology with great rejoicing and with the biggest hug for you.

      I AM praying for you and am honored to get to walk this road with you, my precious sister. I personally believe God has some really amazing plans for you – I truly believe I can see a glimpse of it already – how He desires to use you for His glory and His kingdom. But first, right now, there is just one baby step and then another as you move from the darkness to the light.

      Much love to you!

    2. Becca, So glad you have allowed God to work in your heart!!! I am convinced that you are His child, because if you were not, you would not be able to “see” anything that you’ve seen!!! I pray that your eyes will be opened and your understanding enlightened as God reveals Himself to you more and more! Just as April has taught, when we “let go” of the things we thought we could never let go of, we realize it was actually garbage compared to what the Lord wants to bestow upon us in Himself!!! 🙂 Praying for you!!!

      p.s. we ALL need Jesus every moment of every day!!! We are nothing without Him working in and through us only what He can do!!!!! You are definitely not alone in this journey!!!!

      Love,
      Amanda

      1. “Just as April has taught, when we “let go” of the things we thought we could never let go of, we realize it was actually garbage compared to what the Lord wants to bestow upon us in Himself!!!”

        Amen! Love that – it’s so true. Oh, wow. I am so thankful for the trial that I’ve been in because God is setting me FREE…free from fear, free from jealousy, free to be me!!!!

        Becca,

        I know He’s going to do the same for you. I can attest to this fact as someone who has been on each side. It is worth the struggle, the tears, the heartache of whatever it is you’ll have to go through. It is absolutely more than worth it. God is longing to set you free and heal your hurt and heart. I am so humbled to know that all of this time, all through the painful parts of my marriage and life, He has been faithfully guiding me and leading me to the point to bring me to this freedom. Words can’t express my heart’s joy and thankfulness. He is so, so trustworthy.

        I really recommend reading Captivating. I’ve gotten back into reading mine and believe that God has used and will continue to use this book in a mighty way in women’s lives. (But you know, God is more than capable of bringing you to freedom in His own way – He certainly doesn’t need you to read this book if it doesn’t appeal to you!) 🙂

        1. ContentinChrist,
          AMEN!!!! I love it! It really is so true, our deepest trials are the times when we see God the most and he turns all of it into a beautiful thing in our hearts! Our sorrow truly turns into joy!!!! I am so happy for you! The freedom is priceless, and it is worth letting go of anything!!! So happy for you!!!!!

          Blessings,
          Amanda

  11. What roles should men and women have outside of marriage? Can a woman be a spiritual leader and a man be submissive? Can a woman have authority over a man?
    If not how should I react when a woman tries to lead me?

    Thanks.

    1. No,a woman should NEVER be a spiritual leader within or without the marriage context. If a female is his boss at work, you can either find another job where a man is your boss, or you can stay in that job and do as she asks as your boss, but you can make it clear if she oversteps her authority and asks you to do something that is illegal and immoral that you will not tolerate it. Even if you risk losing your job. If you are reffering to a “female pastor” then run,dont walk from that church. She is in a position that is to strictly be held by men and men alone. But in any of these cases, be firm but considerate In your approach. If it is your wife, sit her down and make it clear to her that you love her dearly, but you are the God ordained head of your house, not her. And you will do your best to be considerate of her feelings and opinions but no matter what, you will lead and she is to follow. Ignore her demands and manipulation and try to get to the heart of what she is trying to tell you. Show her you love her,pray for her and be patient. If she chooses to leave or wont submit, love her anyway. Be steadfast. Dont tell her “you need to submit” because that may aggravate her further. Let her stumble occasionaly but be there to pick her up and encourage her when she does. And make sure you have some Godly counsel and support for both her and yourself.

      1. Anon M,

        You know, I agree that the Bible talks about a woman not having authority spiritually over a man in the church. And a wife is not to usurp authority from her husband in marriage. But I am not sure that a boss or government official would be a “spiritual authority.” They would not be giving spiritual direction.

        I agree that female pastors are not biblical. Or female teachers who teach men – which I try to be very careful not to do here.

        But I do want to be careful not to add anything to what the Bible says. If a queen is ruling the country, I don’t see where Christian men should not honor her authority. We are to submit to the government (Romans 13). If a man would rather not have a female boss, that is something he may decide for himself – but I am not sure that Scripture addresses that particular issue.

        Much love!

    2. Mateo,

      Scripture prohibits women from having authority over men in the church. Here is an article about that from http://www.gotquestions.org. Also, the book Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood edited by John Piper and Wayne Grudem and the Danvers Statement talk about this, as well. You may also search this topic at http://www.desiringgod.org where John Piper addresses the issue of women and authority over men in a number of posts.

      I am not aware of Scriptural prohibitions on women being a boss or supervisor to a man. But, I don’t think that was really a possibility very often in biblical times. We are, as believers, to honor those in authority over us in the government and at work.

  12. Is there always a deeper level of “contentment” or can one reach a final point of being “content”?

    1. Humbled Husband,
      The book referenced in the article, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment,goes very in depth about how fully realized contentment is heaven, but that as we learn to be content on earth, it is a taste of heaven now, seeing that we have Christ within! All that is His is ours and vice versa!

      Personally, I believe that being content is simply being at rest within, knowing and trusting God, NO MATTER WHAT is going on outside of me! I imagine the degrees would consist of the more we lose, the more we gain contentment in Christ alone!

      Amanda

  13. To all,
    Just came across something profound that I hope will encourage!!

    Here is an excellent way of putting it, that the Lord is sufficient for every need:

    “Thus we learn by experience that the Lord is equal to every situation, that Christ has what we need. Instead of being discouraged, we carry about a spirit of victory, although we have not more strength in us than before. We are just as unable in ourselves as we have ever been. But we begin to discover how capable the Lord is, how great His fulness is in our emptiness. He is the Strength in our weakness, He is the Wisdom for our foolishness. Our resources are no longer earthly resources, they are heavenly resources in Christ.”

    This is an exert from an article written by T. Austin Sparks, that you can find here:

    http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/002934.html

    His spiritual insights are priceless!!!

    Blessings,
    Amanda

      1. April,
        I am excited to see what God has in store for me in this. I was very much like Moses when this starting coming about in my heart and from friends/family—my thought was- “I can not”. I am nothing without Him. I have a stirred and burdened heart for this message, and I am so thankful God lead me here to you and showed me all these things. They have been truly life changing!!!!! I pray that God will use me however He chooses, and no matter what, that His name be glorified!!! 🙂 THANK YOU SISTER!!

        Love,
        Amanda

  14. My husband has 3 parts to him. The person he is with me, the person he is at church/around church friends, and the person he is around his “friends” who are bad people in my eyes and terrible influences. The problem I have is I am so happy with who he is with me and at church and the good man he is that when he is not that around guy friends I can’t handle it, get hurt, angry and lash out at him. I want to demand he stop being friends with them but i can’t tell him what to do. I start to discredit who he either really is ?(w/ me and at church) or who he pretends to be and feel like it’s all a show. I try to be content in Christ alone and feel like I am until I see the other side of him and get so upset that it takes over every part of me.

    1. Amina Me,

      I can understand you would be concerned about this. You can certainly respectfully share your concerns. But if you lash out in sinful ways – that is not going to motivate him to want to change. He has to change because he wants to change and because he knows God wants him to change and he wants to please God.

      How is your walk with Christ going?

      Would you be interested in talking about some other ways to approach this?

      Is he sinning when he is with these friends?

      Much love to you!

  15. Many thanks to WorthyofLove for mentioning “The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment.” This book is amazing. It has helped me so much. I plan to buy copies for my friends and family. 🙂

My grandmother is on hospice and won't be with us much longer (11-30-16). I will get to comments when I am able to but I need to be with family right now. Thanks for understanding.

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