Your Spiritual Journey

Your Spiritual Journey

Contentment and the SeaScreamer

Contentment & The SeaScreamer

Last year I took my family on vacation to Myrtle Beach.  While we were there, we bought tickets on a boat called the SeaScreamer.  The company that owned the boats promised we’d see dolphins, or we’d get the next ride for free. 

So, we loaded up on the boat, and we cruised about 30 minutes on the intercoastal waterway to get to the ocean where we would see the dolphins.  Once we got to the ocean, however, the captain decided that the waves were too big to be safe and we turned around.  No dolphins.  So as promised we got tickets for another ride at no extra cost.

So this year we went back to Myrtle Beach and went back out on the SeaScreamer.  We cruised 30 minutes and when we got to the ocean, the waves were too big and the captain turned us back around.

We could have viewed these excursions as failures since we didn’t get to see any dolphins and we probably spent about 5 minutes total on the ocean itself.  However, we discussed it and decided—both times—that we were quite satisfied.  We got to be on a boat in the sun on the water, got to ride some big waves (briefly), and got to spend time together on an adventure.  And we got two rides for the price of one!  Rather than being let down, we were quite content.

Life seldom gives us exactly what we want.  Sometimes we don’t get the promotion.  Sometimes we have to buy a replacement water heater instead of doing something more satisfying with the money. Sometimes our plans don’t work out and things go wrong.  But to borrow a phrase from a pop song, “It’s not getting what you want, it’s wanting what you’ve got”.

Paul tells us in Philippians 4:11-13:  “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.  I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether living in plenty or in want.  I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

Things don’t always go well for us.  We don’t always get what we want.  But we have a church family, we have hope of salvation, and we have knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  In the eternal scheme of things, our lives are so very good.  It isn’t always easy to be content, but it is possible and it is a worthy aspiration.