July 1, 2019 Portland, Oregon
Monday eve – almost 9 pm – and still light outside.
I need to get up and close and lock the doors, turn on some lights, get a snack to munch on as I attempt to put down on paper some of my thoughts. . .
Today, all day, I’ve been asking the Lord; “Where do I belong?”
Until now, I don’t have an answer. Which is why I am asking God this question.
You see, I know one thing: “ I don’t belong here. “
I am not referring to this one particular place: Portland, Oregon, or sitting here in my daughter’s home. I’ve been in Portland many times and lived here for different periods of time.
I didn’t have this restlessness rattling around inside of me. I was at peace, for this is where I was supposed to be.
So – why am I now asking this question? Is there something I’m supposed to be doing and am not doing it? If so, why don’t I know what it is?
Sometimes I laugh at myself. I’m sure that at times people look at me and shake their heads… they are nice about it, but they wonder what is wrong with me? Why can’t I be content and happy here, where I am?
How can I explain?
I’ve learned to be content and happy in over 60 different places in this world.
Paul put it like this in his writings:
“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation. ..” Philippians 4:12
And Paul had plenty of situations!
A highly respected and bright pupil, taught by the leading rabbis in Jerusalem.
After Jesus was crucified, a living Jesus confronted Paul on the road to Damascus,. Paul, who was seeking Christians to throw them in jail and more . . . spent the rest of his life sharing about the importance of Jesus, and others throwing him in prison, stoning him, him, maligning him.
Here, Paul said he had learned how to be content in the midst of any and ALL situations?
So, what is it with me? Can’t I do the same?
Is the answer yes, I can?
Do I want to be content in all circumstances? Yes, I do!
So, what do I do to once again learn how to be content?
Paul gives me three no-nonsense, practical and inclusive answers.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)
“6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, at the same time, thanking him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Ephesians 5: 15-21
“ 20 And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Thessalonians 5:13b-22
Be patient with everyone.
15 See that no one pays back evil for evil, but always try to do good to each other and to all people.
16 Always be joyful.
17 Never stop praying.
18 Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
19Do not stifle the Holy Spirit.
This is my list of basic instructions. I have no excuse for not being content, even though I don’t have answers
I’d better get to work, studying these guidelines once again – and applying them in my life.
When I obey Him, He takes care of my emotions.
Thank You, Father! I am where you want me. I trust You, knowing You are putting things in their proper place – including me.