I’m a day dreamer. Like all day all hours day dreamer. Most of it has to do with my role within my family. I’m currently a working mom. I really want to be a stay-at-home mom and home school my chillins. I also really want to live near the ocean (2 hours is not near enough). Like Hawaii, where I used to live. But let’s be real. At least that’s what God says. I noticed recently that when my marriage started to improve (it was supah rocky), that I didn’t day dream quite as much. Then, it hit me. Instead of facing the reality of my marriage and really trying to fix it, I was living in some dream world that I thought would make it better. The only problem: that world doesn’t exist.
I was so guilty of day dreaming about this other life, that I wasn’t taking the time to be thankful for my life, my real life. And when we aren’t thankful, we notice our blessings might fall short. I think we’re all guilty of this. Sometimes it’s in the form of being jealous of someone else–a co-worker, a friend, a star. Sometimes it’s living in the past–missing your old life that was “so much easier.” Sometimes you’re like me and you’re so busy dreaming about your dream life that you don’t see the blessings you already have. So what does God say about this? Let’s take a look.
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. -James 1:17
This verse reminds us that every little thing we receive in life–the good and the bad–was crafted perfectly for us by God.
The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. -2 Peter 3:9
I like to think that one day I may be able to quit working and home school my kids are start a little side business, but this verse tells us that, while we think God is taking too long to fulfill our hopes, his intent is to bring us to the point of repentance before we can receive his gifts. And no, that doesn’t mean that if you say “I’m sorry, God. I’ve been really bad lately. Please forgive me.” at this very second, that you’ll be living your dream life tomorrow. Trust in his timing.
…Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things… -Psalm 103:1-5
What else do we need in life other than God’s forgiveness, good health, love, mercy, and eternal life? It says “MAY I NEVER FORGET”, and when we are constantly hoping to live some other life, we ARE forgetting.
This is what I have observed to be good: that it is appropriate for a person to eat, to drink and to find satisfaction in their toilsome labor under the sun during the few days of life God has given them—for this is their lot. Moreover, when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the ability to enjoy them, to accept their lot and be happy in their toil—this is a gift of God. They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart. -Ecclesiastes 5:18-20
The key words in this verse are “the few days of life God has given them.” To think that my life, which is so short in the expanse that is God’s Earth, has never lacked food, drink, and some good hard work and reward, it’s a blessing. Another key phrase “this is their lot.” God intended for some of us to work hard labor, some of us to sit at desks and make millions. The most important thing is that we realize that God’s intentions for our lives are gifts. At the end of the day, he put right where he wants us, and we should go through life never thinking twice about it.
But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. -James 3:14-16
Well, this is pretty clear. If you’re jealous or have selfish ambition, your life will be a hot mess. God says so. If you don’t want your life to be a hot mess, then stop wanting what isn’t in his will for you.
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. -James 4:1-2
This is a warning against what jealousy and ingratitude can do to our relationships with others. I saw this within my own marriage. I was so busy complaining to my husband that I wanted to move back to Hawaii (and mainly because our marriage was good there), that I didn’t see how it made him feel. And I didn’t see how that simple complaint, over and over, was destroying each day. Although I’ve never asked him, I can imagine my husband felt like I was an ungrateful wife–a wife not thankful for the home and life he was working so hard to provide for me–even if it’s wasn’t in Hawaii. Then, I imagine that God felt the same exact way as my husband. Completely baffled that he did so much for me…and there I was, complaining. The last line of this verse is also very important. Notice I’ve said day dream, hope, and other words to describe what I was doing. But for every 10 times I dreamed and complained for something, I may have prayed for it once. If we have desires, we should let God know through prayer. And if it’s in his will, it will happen. Trusting in that will keep you from complaining, envying, and wasting your days just dreamin’ away.
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. -Romans 12:2
This verse just reinforces everything above. This world is full of jealousy. Everyone wants what they don’t have. And they’ll spend their life savings on something just to have it. DO NOT COPY THIS WORLDLY BEHAVIOR. Instead, CHANGE THE WAY YOU THINK. Realize that worldly belongings do not decide your place in Heaven. Instead, be thankful for God’s will for you. As the verse says, it is GOOD, PLEASING, and PERFECT.
There’s that saying, “Have you prayed about it as much as you’ve talked about it?” (Or “complained about it?). I doubt there are many of us who could say yes. And even fewer who have prayed about it more than they’ve talked about it.
SUMMARY: Steps to Take
1. Want something you don’t have. (That’s easy).
2. Pray: “God, I really desire to ____________. I pray it’s in your will and that I may receive it, but if I don’t, let me understand that it is not in your will for me. Let me be thankful for all of the blessings you have given to me.”
3. Wait patiently and trust in his timing. It may happen in two days, two months, or two years. Or never.
4. In the mean time, be overwhelmingly thankful for your blessings. Have the attitude that even if you don’t get ____________, that you still have everything you need in life to be happy and thankful.