Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Discipline of Contentment

I was catching up on some older podcasts yesterday, and I happened upon espisode 183 of  "Per.sonally Spe.aking" with Monsignor Ji.m Li.sante.  He interviewed Tony H.ale who played "Buster" on the T.V. show Arr.ested Dev.elopment.  They talked about the difficulties of being a Christian in Hollywood, and it was a fairly interesting interview; however, the end was what blew me away.  At around 15 minutes into the program, Monsignor asked Tony a question that was basically, "Looking back on your life, is there anything that you wish you would have tried to do differently?"  To.ny replied that he would have practiced the "discipline of contentment" more.  He explained that much of his life was spent saying "when this happens..." or "when I get the show..."  He continued that "...even when you get what you really want, you [won't] be able to enjoy it, because you haven't been practicing contentment." 

The part that made me certain I was going to blog about the interview was when he said:
"...because whatever it is, you know, marriage or babies, you know, getting a certain job--people always think this one thing is going to completely satisfy."

So true.

He explained that being grateful and happy with what you have " a discipline--something that you have to practice..."

Very good.

I know it's something I struggle with. 

Have you ever thought that your life would be complete if you only had a baby?  Do you feel that you miss/missed the other good things in life while you are/were focused on becoming pregnant, etc.?  How do you practice contentment in your life?


  1. Oh, I love this. I was always a "when this happens" person. When we moved into our home almost 8 years ago, I realized that my list would never be completely fulfilled and that I had to shift my focus. Our years of financial stress and employment struggles have taught us big time how to be content with what we have and focus on the present. But it's a constant struggle. I think it's one of the biggest blessings, though, of being without whatever we want most. So many people get whatever they want, but don't appreciate it. I'm grateful for our droughts because they have helped us be grateful.

  2. I love this too. I was just thinking yesterday, as I looked around at things that need to be updated in my house, that I should really just be happy with what I have! And I wondered why I can't get to that place! It's certainly something I need to pray about and work on.

  3. i think i realized this early on in our fertility struggles too, especially as i would talk to friends who were new mother's and they would routinely offer me their children. it hurt to have them so casually be ungrateful for their kids, but because nearly all of them did it, i began to realize that maybe that mothering thing really is that hard and comes with its own struggles. its hard to remember that always.
    of course i try to convince myself of that and then i hang out with my adorable nephew and see him even in his bad moods and think wow, i'm really missing out on not being a parent. it truly in miraculous. thus the see-saw.

  4. This practice of contentment is something I struggle with too. I'm always looking ahead towards "when we have a baby, we'll do this ..." but not do anything in the now to enjoy any couple time. This is such a great post! Thank you, Thank you!!!

  5. This is a great post and something to contemplate for me, as I am the BIG complainer.