Sometimes you get what you want only after finding peace of mind and happiness without it.
Did you know that it is a choice: you can love your life, or you can choose to hate it? Even as things are, they don’t have to change before you can choose to love the way things are. And the quicker you find happiness right where you are, the sooner life softens to you. It reminds me of the time when we moved into the house that you see on our website. I was in the middle of writing “The Jackrabbit Factor” and we sold two other homes to afford it. Technically we only needed one of the homes to close. Both homes were in escrow at the time and we loaded up the U-haul from California, headed for Arizona, and we parked the truck outside of Grandma’s house.
We spent the night in her basement, expecting the home to close like the next day. This was the dream! The house we were coming from we had six kids and we were in two bedrooms. When we were at Grandma’s house I was really disappointed when the house that we were selling didn’t close the next day. The homes had actually been in escrow a long, long time – so it really was going to happen any day. After three days I was starting to get a little frustrated. We had six kids cooped up in one bedroom and most of the things we needed were deeply buried in that U-haul outside. In fact, the truck was due to be turned in and we started racking up late fees for every day we were keeping it. But, it would have been ridiculous to unload everything into a storage unit just to have to rent another truck a day later to move it all out again. And this was in Arizona summer!
But you should have seen me by the end of the first week. I was irritable, I was going stir-crazy with nothing to do but wait for the phone call. And by the end of two weeks I was furious! I didn’t even care if both homes closed anymore, I just prayed that one of them… either one, any one of ’em, just one of them would hurry up! During the third week I wondered if it would fall through all together. I mean that U-haul truck was still sitting outside, and we’re in the third week! The seller was getting anxious and we were faced with the prospect of having to start all over again looking for a place to live. If you’ve ever looked for a home and found the right one – that is no easy task. It’s taxing, it’s exhausting, it’s emotionally draining.
Finally, out of sheer exhaustion, I collapsed on the bed and I cried and I cried until I had no more tears. Then I decided that it just didn’t matter anymore. I didn’t need that house. I would have been thrilled to be in a mobile trailer at that point. All I wanted was to be in a place of my own that I could call home. I released my grip on what had to be, and I found peace without it. And you know what? Within hours we got the phone call. We were able to move into the house after all, but it didn’t happen until I relaxed my grip and found peace… without it. I believe that that house could have closed if I had already been that person who had found peace without it.
So yes, set your goals! Put everything you’ve got into achieving them, but if it’s a really big goal, you’ll probably face a moment where you’ll have to prove to yourself that you’re okay… without it. And more than once I’ve seen that it comes through shortly after that. Learn to be happy as things are. Find acceptance in your life even if nothing were to change. And then things really begin to change. But it’s funny because at that point you think “but really, it’s okay, I was happy without it.” (laughs) And that’s when you really feel overcome with gratitude because you realize that it’s a merciful God who is interested in your personal growth and spiritual maturity.
This has been ‘A Little Bit of Wisdom’ with Leslie Householder.
Listen to her podcast and download her books free at ararekindoffaith.com