Contentment or apathy?
Do not confuse these two words. Being content means, to me, that I am willing to do without some creature comforts in order to achieve other goals. Being apathetic implies that I don’t care about what I have/don’t have. While I believe we, as Christians, should learn to be content with our lives, I do not feel God asks us to be apathetic.
You know you’re a mom when you’re drooling over a friend’s new minivan. I used to declare that I’d never drive one of those. I would rock the SUV regardless of the cost of gas and the size of the beast. I was too cool to drive a van.
Then I had kids. And grew a brain. See, minivans are created for moms. They’re the right height. They have storage places that no other car has. The great ones stow their seats right inside them, though I’ve never personally owned one that does that. The kids’ doors do NOT open outward directly into the unblemished car in the next space. I could go on, but you probably get the idea. The cost of gas isn’t even what makes me strongly desire a van again. It’s simply that SUVs were NOT created with moms in mind. They were created to look cool and make moms feel like they’re cool while still having enough seating to haul around the kids. (If you drive an SUV, rest assured, I think you’re cool. However, I’d rather be comfortable than cool. I’m like this in other areas, too. Shoes, for instance. I don’t wear cool shoes. I have nothing against people who wear cool shoes. You look nice. Sound all cool “click-clacking” around while I sound like a frog “flip-flapping” everywhere I go.)
I have to look for another van to replace mine. I loved my van. It’s sitting outside immovable (since the transmission locked up) and I hate to let it go. I have a possible buyer for $1000. He’s buying it for junk. Another possible buyer said that we should just pay the $85 to have it towed and crushed. CRUSHED. When he first told me that I was a tough girl. An hour later I cried. I brought 3 of my babies home from the hospital in that van and the thought of them crushing it into a cube literally crushes my heart.
Matt and I spent some time praying for God to provide for us two newer cars. We are not asking for two brand new vehicles. (If so, it would sound like this: “God, I pray for a 2013 Chrysler Town and Country for me with all the bells and whistles and a 2013 Land Rover Defender for Matt that will miraculously be allowed to be shipped to the states when the time comes even though Defenders are not made to U.S. specs.”) That’s not what we asked for. We asked for wisdom. We asked for clarity. We asked for a newer van and for it to enter our lives sooner than we expect. We asked for the Durango to work properly until the time comes for us to purchase a replacement.
Are we content with the Durango? Yes. We are willing to drive that car for a few years. Even considered taking it back to the states with us. I’m not hating on the Durango, even though it is an SUV. It’s Matt’s car, so I’m okay that it’s an SUV. And it happens to be a vehicle that seats all 6 of us… added bonus for sure. We were content with the van. I was willing to drive that thing into the ground… which, apparently, I did. So wanting newer vehicles does not make us discontent. It just means we are not apathetic. While we want to be content with what God gives us, we don’t believe we have to be apathetic and not care at all. Some synonyms for apathetic are: unconcerned, unmoved, uninvolved, disinterested, unemotional, emotionless, dispassionate, lukewarm, unmotivated, and halfhearted. While I believe we are to accept God’s gifts gratefully and graciously, I do not believe he asks us to be emotionless or unmotivated. I believe we are allowed to try to earn/save more money to purchase nicer things.
My friends who have a new(er) van did it the right way and we couldn’t be happier for them. We rejoice in that they are able to drive around in a great vehicle and they are not dragging a payment behind them. I look forward to the moment I get into my newer vehicle and smell that nice, paid-for smell. Our current vehicles all have that paid-for smell, but they also emit the smell of stale French fries and musty carpet. One day I’ll have a car that smells paid-for but lacks the less-than-attractive scents that we are willing to endure for a season. We are just praying that this season is shorter than we see it lasting on paper.
* Typically I try to use my own images exclusively in my blog, but I don’t have access to any pimped out SUVs to photograph.