“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” (Isaiah 26:3, NLT)
I sat on the edge of my daughter’s twin bed, stretching long legs across a pink hoot-owl comforter. Dusk seeped through the window blinds, shedding just enough fading daylight for my eyes to scan the familiar scenery.
In a bookcase on the wall, storybook spines lined the bottom shelf below stacks of cardboard puzzle boxes and early reader paperbacks. Stuffed animals, Velcro shoes, and a fraying jump rope lay strewn across the floor. In the corner of the room, a dollhouse held mini furniture lovingly arranged for a plastic family of six. Above it all, hazy blue Dream Light stars glowed on the ceiling.
I listened to the slow, steady breathing of two little girls drifting to sleep. And it occurred to me—this is as good as it gets.
I am blessed.
But. Rewind a few hours, and my mind raced with different thoughts. Grumpy thoughts.
Dirty dishes on the table. Deadlines on my desk. Bills to pay. Groceries to buy.
That leak in the ceiling. Paint chips on the wall. Dust on the baseboards and juice in the carpet.
When can we build a new house? When can I afford a cleaning lady? Will my toddler ever ditch those Pull-Ups? How will I find time to bake cookies for the school picnic? And why are flights to Disney World so crazy expensive?
Is it summer yet?
That’s when I’ll be happy. When I have those things, carve that spare time, tie these loose ends and tidy this clutter. Then I’ll be content. Then I can rest.
Sitting in my girls’ room in the twilight, I realized—I’ve got it all backwards.
Take a break from running and complaining. Breathe in, breathe out. Pray. Then I’ll open my eyes and discover—I’m already content.
A dear friend once told me she’s living her dream. Four kids crowd her house, the budget is tight, noise and mess are constant, and yet she reminds herself daily that this is what she wanted.
When did I forget? Fifteen years ago, floundering through our early post-college years, my friend and I both longed to be loved and settled. We wanted husbands, a mortgage, and our own laundry machines. We dreamed of ordinary family life, not because it’s glamorous, but because it’s meaningful.
And now I have it.
So what’s the problem?
Infections, all of them. They inflame my perspective and steal my joy. But I’ve discovered a cure.
If I really sit quiet for a minute and take a look around, I can see with crystal clarity—I’m already living the life I always wanted. It might be messy, yes. Cluttered, hectic, and imperfect, absolutely.
But it’s beautiful. And it’s mine.
I don’t need to focus ahead to that elusive house upgrade or a Florida vacation. I’m in the center of God’s blessings right here, right now. Who knew they’d smell like peanut butter and leaky Pull-Ups? Sometimes I think we expect God to show up all shiny and clean. But the truth is he’s in the muck with us every day. We just have to focus our hearts to find him.
So will you join me? Let’s shut off our racing brains for a minute and take a look around. I hope you’ll see what I see.
We’re already blessed.