Sunday, July 17, 2011

~~~~~THOUGHTS ON A SUNDAY MORNING~~~~~ Choosing to be Content

 
~BEAUTIFUL BRIARWOOD~

When my Mr. AGPMan and I purchased our La Chaumière de Briarwood in July of 1992 she needed some serious help.  Her bones were good...really good in fact.  She was a diamond in the rough.  A two-story beauty with four bedrooms, three bathrooms, two living, two dining, laundry room, kitchen and a huge over-sized garage.  She sat upon a beautiful (though overly wooded) lot in a peaceful neighborhood and she had sidewalks.

I had always dreamed of having sidewalks...
~A COUPLE YEARS AGO~

Though truly lovely, she also came with brow-beaten walls, torn up moldings, aging paint, worn out carpeting, cracked tiles, outdated appliances and a driveway in need of a French drain...  He gardens were overgrown and had been poorly managed.  Her stately trees were tearing up the roof line and army ants were chewing into her foundation...

Originally I looked passed all her imperfections because I had longed prayed to be a home owner for so many years.  But, as the roots of daily comfort in our home took hold so did my dissatisfaction with the slow-going and costly process to change her.  And, I really desired change.  I was growing frustrated with all the things that were in desperate need of repair and felt like I'd never get past the 'dreaming stage' of where I hoped one day my home might be.
~LAST FALL~

It was very easy to look at the gorgeous new homes being built within our highly sought after Oklahoma town and the remodel jobs taking place as well...  I just couldn't wrap my brain around where other people were getting their money.  It certainly wasn't making it's way to me!  I began to get discouraged and started to feel jealous over the prosperity of others!  Before long I was chattering away non-stop about wanting to sell.  I griped about anything and everything and the things that I once dreamed excitedly about changing began to bring discontent.

One day I sat down and made a list of the "must-haves" I wanted in a home.

This was my simple list:

A two-story house.
Four bedrooms.
Three bathrooms.
Two living.
Two dining.
Laundry room. 
Kitchen.
Over-sized garage.
Wooded lot.
and...

Sidewalks.

"I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content."
(Philippians 4:11 NKJV)

Here's a simple yet profound thought...

Jealousy,
You are your own
Ultimate
Self-destructive-indulgence
And it will destroy you!

~~*~~
Blessings today as you enjoy life and seek to find contentment and peace in the gifts from the Most High...

Love to you... 

33 comments:

Crystal Rose Cottage said...

Something we should all think about when those jealous thoughts start to creep in. What we desire is usually right under our nose! Your house is lovely, you are blessed!~Hugs, Patti

Ceekay- Thinkin of Home said...

I have been there. Seeing everything other people have. We have NEVER had that. My husband was a small church preacher for 20 years of our married life. But I have known wanting for things that were never going to be. I think we all do it to some extent...but then things in life that really matter happen...and I looked around and thought, I am blessed with what I have. Still am!

Tina @ TinyBear said...

Oh - your home is SO beautiful Rebecca - so romantic and pretty. I´m sure every room inside is as amazing as your workroom.
Have a wonderful sunday
xo Tina

Chatty Crone said...

Oh my goodness - I loved this - showing us through example. Just love it.

Your home is gorgeous by the way!

Melissa said...

Very thought provoking. Thank you. I have been praying for years that hubby & I could move. Now he has a job in a city 2 hours away & we could end up moving there, or not. I'm not sure what will happen. I'm excited and sad. We have been on a weird ride financially ever since we got married. Friends of ours are doing better, some are not. I was a bit jealous and miffed the other day talking to a friend and hearing her plans for the future which included renting a house in town and buying a mountain property.
My husband has not had steady employment in these last 6 years but we have NEVER lacked for anything (we also had no savings-hello, Lord!) and I would not change the lessons,character building and spirituality, faith building journey I have been on for all the money in the world.
I'm so glad your house turned into your dream home. God is so good!

Carolyn said...

ahhhh, thank you, Sweet Rebecca! i needed that! just friday, i had myself a little pity party as i chatted with a friend. as i was wha-whaing, i kept thinking i needed to shut up!! :) God has blessed me in so many ways...i just needed to focus on that and not the negative! i have found recently that getting on FB and seeing all the riches others have been blessed with...well, the "jealousy" monster started creeping in and chasing me! ...RUN!! :D

thank you for the sweet message this morning! i believe what i have is perfect for me!!! :)

Hugs, Carolyn ~Cottage Sunshine

Jan M said...

I can always count on you to speak from your heart, and say exactly what many of us are also feeling and thinking.
I have one of those new houses. But, in order to gain it, I left behind a neighborhood and now live in just a subdivision. I would take back the old house and all its issues and challenges, just to have my precious neighbors. Sometimes it is not about the sticks and bricks that make the house, but what is inside your house and all the others surrounding it. Blessings to you, and much happiness and contentment always in your beautiful home!

NanaDiana said...

I know exactly what you mean. Especially when our kids were little and I wanted all the things for them that we couldn't get. Oh, we fed and clothed them but we didn't do a lot of extras with/for them. We couldn't afford to. The truth goes back, I think, to something Abraham Lincoln said, "Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be"~ He was a smart man, wasn't he? xo Diana

SocksAndMittens said...

Love your house, it is so pretty! Sometimes I become unhappy with things also. But when we are away from home for a short vacation and when we are coming back I am loving every little corner in my home!

Inspiration from Nature said...

Hello Rebecca,

OMG, you have a beautiful home !
I agree with the above comments. We must look around and think we are blessed with what we have. I for myself always privilegied the verb to be instead of to have and I am just happy to be and to have just what I now have.

Barb~Bella Vista Cottage said...

Rebecca, as Ron climbed the corporate ladder, I wanted bigger and better. I really had a hard time for a while.

Bella Vista is 2400 square feet...not including porches and garage and it is on a lake....still I was not satisfied. Somehow, we never made the move to bigger and better and in the last ten years have seen over five of our dearest friends lose their bigger and better homes from lay-offs and the economy in general plus, massive spending.

Each day I thank God for my dear Bella Vista and listening to my hubby who always said....this is heaven on earth.

Blessings, Barb ♥

Sue @ Not the Good Scissors! said...

I pray for those that just don't see and appreciate what they have and always chasing what they think will make them happy. Just the simple thoughts of daily gratitude makes us content and happy. When things get out of sorts for me I stop and count my blessings. That always makes those "crazy" and self-destructing thoughts vanish and it always results in a deep and calming sigh.
Love you girlie, Sue

Stacey said...

I know exactly what you mean, Rebecca. In this awesome town we live in there's never enough to keep up with the Joneses. There's no point in trying because that would surely lead to unhappiness. My husband and I constantly tell each other that there must be a lot of people here in SERIOUS debt.

We did just redo our kitchen but it was time. It will last us until we are old and gray!

Dixie said...

I am married to the most content person I have ever known... It's just who he is.. because of him, and what I have learned from him about contentment... this little refrigerator magnet has been in my kitchen for many years, and lives there as a reminder...

"The Happiest People don't have the best of everything... They Make the best of everything they have..."

Words to live by.

Sunday Blessings. Dixie

Debbie@Debbie-Dabble and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Rebecca,
What a great post!!
I know exactly where you are coming from.
Our little townhouse was supposed to be a 5 year investment. BUT when Joe lost his job, couldn't find work for 2 years, I had 2 babies and worked full time, plans changed. I was bitter for quite awhile about never getting my "dream" house and always being the major bread winner because of the amount of money I make as a nurse.About 15 years ago, I realized that we would never be able to move and the boys were getting older so why did I want to move to a bigger house when it would just be the 2 of us in a short period of time.
That is when my whole mind set changed and i decided that this little townhouse would be made into the house of my dreams.
It may not be for everyone but my house is filled with everything that I love and when I come home from work every morning, I want to drop to my knees and Thank God that I am home. I enjoy being home so much that there are times when I am off for a few days that I never leave my home.
I have also learned that the things that i want in my home is my family. Even though the boys no longer live here, the door is always open and they are more than welcome to come and visit any time they desire.
Have a great Sunday!!

Hugs,
Debbie

sissie said...

Your home is very beautiful. I think what matters most is that there is love in a home no matter how fancy or elaborate.
We built our dream home about seven years ago and now I long to return home to the mountains.
Someday maybe.

hugs
Sissie

Dolores said...

So very true about jealousy......we're all guilty of it from time to time though.

Your home is so beautiful!!!!!! I'd love to walk up your sidewalk and stroll through your home.....taking in all the beauty you've created.
Hugs,

Marilyn said...

Like a ship on the ocean it is hard to be still when the waves are just a rocking you but we have to bear in mind that even a wave will recede & peace will return..... Lovely home but I think I have said that before!!
Love, Marilyn

Deanna said...

Becky Sue, Sweet Summer Blessings to you.

I use to say my husband could live in a cardboard box!!! His ideas of what a house needed was different than mine. I've had many a battle with this one. Thankfully he has changed and enjoys working on projects. I'm the one slowing on the projects.

God is good and greatly to be praised. We are living in houses we didn't build.

Lovely place you have and I enjoy seeing a little into your Oklahoma world.

God bless,
d

Goosegirl said...

Dear Rebecca, you are such a sweetheart!
I too, work hard at staying content. Someday, maybe, we will own a home again. Maybe. But for now, we have a cozy rental that is a 2 block walk to my little one's school, and we have a little back yard and I have a place where my sewing machine can stay up all the time. Our house has a roof and doors and windows and keeps us warm and dry. My family loves me and God is so good. It is enough.

Mona Kay at Home said...

I don't think I've ever seen such a dramatic B&A! Your "after" is just stunning! So gorgeous...

Shelia said...

Oh, Beautiful Rebecca, I've been there too! I had always wanted a baby grand piano. I'd been playing piano since I was 12 and was playing in church. In my 30s, my best friend who also played got a baby grand piano. I cried and cried out to God and said - no fair. I play better than her. I'm the church pianist! I cried and cried and felt sorry for myself. God grabbed me up and reminded me of how very blessed I was and about just what you've said today - be content. In about 3 years from that, Mr. Precious got a promotion and we moved. He had told me if he ever got that job, he would buy me a baby grand piano. He did. I cried. I felt humbled and blessed and did remember when I acted so jealous about my friend getting the piano I wanted and thought I deserved.
My special piano sits in my living room today and I call her "MY GIFT"!
Love you,
Shelia ;)

Barbara Jean said...

Rebecca,
I have to say, every time I come here my breath is taken away. Not just by the beauty in pictures you share with us, but the beauty inside you, and the wisdom you share.

I was so taken away by your "where women create" post I could not even leave a comment. It is all so beautiful.
As is your home. A reflection of who you are, and of Jesus in you.

Each little note you leave for me is an encouragement. thank you, more than i can ever say.

sweet blessings to a sweet lady

barbara jean

Eileen & Karen said...

Love your post today Rebecca! It's so true that we need to learn to be content with what God gives us. It seems our human nature to look to the grass accross the street and think that it looks greener over there. No matter what our state, we are truly blessed with so much around us to be grateful for. Thanks for giving us something to ponder today.
Hugs,
Eileen
Forget Me Not Dreams

Mary @ Redo 101 said...

Same experience - inherited my husband's 1960 brick ranch in really bad condition (but good bones). I spent 19 years updating it, bit by bit and griping the whole time. Somehow I knew that if I ever finished updating everything in that house, we would move. And so it was. I never got to enjoy the fruits of the labor I'd put into the now gorgeous house, for we had to move on. I learned a painful lesson about being content ... thanks for sharing.

Kim B said...

So true! You must learn to be content and thankful for what you have, not worried about what you dont have.
Have a great week. I hope you are better after that incident with the wasp. Hugs, Kim

Grandma Yellow Hair said...

Most of us suffer from this and don't realize it. But we really are Blessed and have already everything we need.
Love
Maggie

Marilyn said...

My dear friend, you are a wise woman. Everything you wanted on your list was already there. God does delight in His gifts to us! ♥♫

Something Special said...

I just returned from a visit to Minnesota, where my husband is from. We live in Southern Nevada now in a rural community. It was so green a plush there, with so many trees and green pastures and farmland, and the homes were so lovely there too. Your home reminds me of some I saw there. We did so much driving around the state. Your home is as lovely on the outside as it is on the inside. Thanks always for your sweet comment, and we will have to talk about the swappin later. I got to get the Christmas in July swap done this next week and another matchbox swap first. It will be so much fun to swap with you.

Jane said...

Hi Rebecca,
Oh yes....I've been there. As I look back it seems that when we were newly married, we felt we had to keep up with everyone. As we have matured (sounds better than getting older), we have come to realize how blessed we are with what we have.
You have a beautiful home and the surroundings are absolutely gorgeous!!
Jane

chateau de fleurs said...

Hi Rebecca,I totally understand what you are saying. I have learned to be so patient these days in this economy. There is always so much to be done at my home. It was a bank owned neglected property with so much work and still I have loads of things to take care of but its one day at a time with me these days. Thank you so much for the heart felt comment you left on my blog, it brought tears to my eyes to have you say such sweet things about me and my art. Have a wonderful blessed week! XO Christie

A Southern Rose said...

Hi Rebecca,

It's been so long since I've been out in blogland and I have missed it so much. I couldn't wait to come visit your place to see what you've been up to. I love coming here....so peaceful. Sometimes, I just stop by to listen to your beautiful music. Today your post really hit home with me. I believe that we have all felt these same feelings at times. I have learned some very valuable lessons over the past few months about this very thing. I almost lost my house....but everything is okay now. It was scary for a while though. It really made me appreciate things a lot more. Now there are even bigger battles going on in my life that I am having to deal with that make losing my house seem so small. I know that with God beside, my family and I will get through it. Just knowing that he will never leave my side is all that I need. Thank you for this beautiful thought provoking post. You are a very blessed lady and you are an inspiration to us all.

Hugs,
Lee Laurie

karen said...

lovely home. We moved into our home around 45 yrs . ago. I believe it is one of the newer homes in our neighborhood.Or was back than. Mixed into older farm looking homes. I always felt 'We have the nices house on the block". Shame on me. Now it is old just like all the rest That have been her for yrs. And newer nicer homes have popped up around it. Or the older homes have been remolded. Our home is not the nicest anymore. Needs lots of work. Now I what my home to be nice a pretty like theres. Shame on me. LOL!

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