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More Than Enough

July 5, 2009

“Look at all this stuff I got!” I said with a self-satisfied smile while displaying the clothes and shoes I’d bought from T. J. Maxx to my husband. I was excited about all the great deals I’d scored.

A few days went by. I found myself obsessing about clothes I’d seen at that store and still wanted to buy. I’d restrained myself the first time. They were things I liked for myself, but not necessarily needed. If I’d purchased everything I wanted, my bill would have been too big for our budget! But every item was such a great deal! Wouldn’t it be prudent to make the purchases now? What if I waited and then they weren’t around anymore?

Driving back to that same store a week later, I was almost relieved when I could no longer find the things that had caught my eye earlier. Relieved that the temptation to make a choice was gone. Relieved to discover that by not finding these items, I was suddenly free from thinking about them anymore.

The fact is I always want more: more books, music, clothes, camera lenses, and Starbucks. The more I get the more I want. Sometimes what I want isn’t just material items but better circumstances, like perfect kids and a comfortable life. I know intellectually that material items and perfect circumstances are not ultimately satisfying, but part of me always wants something that I don’t have—like an iPhone—for instance. And this part of me wars against the other side of me that longs to be content in simple daily living, happy with what I have.

I have to ask myself, How much is enough? Will I ever be satisfied, free from the never-ending longing for more?

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How do you find contentment?

(Image: Ungrind.org)

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 6, 2009 3:55 am

    I know discontentment will always linger in my heart. But, I have truly been blessed for this past year to live in a culture that is far less commercialized than the US. There is not a strip mall on every corner here. In fact, it takes a lot more effort for me to go to the shopping mall, so I just don’t go. I don’t get the Sunday paper with the hundreds of fliers of “good deals.” And perhaps best of all for my wallet, there is no Target around, so I don’t have a store where I walk in for one thing, and end up spending $100. It’s been refreshing to get out of the world’s progress for a time to see what my family truly needs and values (which is much less than it used to be).

  2. July 6, 2009 2:47 pm

    Thanks for sharing that perspective, Rebecca. It must be interesting to be able to compare cultures in that way.

  3. July 7, 2009 8:12 am

    Wow, you should read my post from today; we’re on the same brainwave…

  4. July 7, 2009 4:31 pm

    Good article Danielle.

  5. July 9, 2009 8:28 am

    Amen. It is ALWAYS good for me to read articles like this one, to remind me of my ungreatfulness, of my discontentment with what I DO have.
    Thanks for the reminder and another great article!!!

    OH, and I love P. Tripp. He’s good 🙂

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