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I’ve been struggling with contentment lately. A large part of me would like to move. It isn’t so much about wanting a different house, it is more about wanting a more expansive and quiet outdoor environment.

That isn’t to say I don’t want a walk-in pantry and a mudroom because I do, I really do. But I want to see the sunsets and walk in a woods of my own far more. It is a deep desire.

I found a piece of land I really like. It checks nearly all of the boxes on my wish list. I dream about the house we’d build and how the sky would look from the porch in the evening. It makes me all teary and wistful if I linger there too long.

Just this morning I prayed that God would help me to be content right where I am. Focusing on all I have to be grateful for, frustrated with myself that I can’t settle into that and just be happy.

Then I left the house to for an appointment with a client. Since I was hungry I swung through a Wendy’s drive-thru for a baked potato and some chicken nuggets.

Next to the building a person was huddled. At first, I wasn’t sure if it was a man or a woman, all I could see was a face aged by weather and hardship.

photo of homeless woman's cartMy heart sank and my mind raced.

It is 4 degrees and snowing. There I am in the comfort of my SUV with heated seats on high and this person was outside with nowhere to go.

Whatever the story, heartbreaking.

I couldn’t shake the contrast of our circumstances. I parked in a neighboring lot, ate my potato and a few nuggets, but my appetite wasn’t really there anymore.

I drove back over to the restaurant, went inside and spent $20 on a gift card. I figured it would provide a few warm meals and a reason to be inside as a paying customer. I didn’t know what else to do but felt called to do something.

As I approached, I realized this person was a woman even shorter in stature than myself. As I held out the card and said “I’d like to give you this” her face lit up. She eyes were kind and her voice warm as she told me how much she appreciated it.

She went inside and I left, walking past the cart filled with all her worldly possessions. She has been on my mind ever since. I worry and wonder and pray.

I didn’t give her much but she gave me an abundance of perspective. She may very well pray desperate prayers for the things I’ve grown accustomed.

My dreams of that land and that house will continue but tonight I will find contentment with all that I’ve already been blessed with.


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