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Embrace Contentment or Revel in Bitterness

I’ve had my most trying week of 2022. While I try not to read too much into daily events, failure and rejection have been a common theme in the past 72 hours. On one side of this internal wresting match, human nature lurks, tempting me to revel in bitterness, gossip and pity. On the other, a still small voice is whispering “embrace contentment.” If you’re wondering, I still haven’t made a decision.

Many plans are in a man’s mind, but it is the Lord’s purpose for him that will stand, Proverbs 19:21.

One of the messages that I keep trying to tell myself comes from King Solomon. “Many are the plans in a man’s mind, but God’s purpose will prevail.” However, when you’re about to move and my request for a lateral hardship transfer to South Carolina has been denied, the uncertainty of my future is eating at me. Perhaps, I’ve been too comfortable in my current position, and this is God’s way of rocking my boat.

Then Satan answered the Lord, Does Job [reverently] fear God for nothing? 10 Have You not put a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have conferred prosperity and happiness upon him in the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has, and he will curse You to Your face. 12 And the Lord said to Satan (the adversary and the accuser), Behold, all that he has is in your power, only upon the man himself put not forth your hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord, Job 1:9-12.

Like the words of Moses’ farewell address to Israel, I can either choose life or death, contentment or bitterness. Although my trial of having two different cars not start for me and break down, this is nothing compared to what one man faced in Job 1-2. Maybe I need to take a deep breath, go to sleep and hope this week was just a bad dream. That didn’t work! The next time you encounter one of those Murphy Law days, weeks, months or year, embrace contentment or revel in bitterness. The choice is yours.

by Jay Mankus


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