So, while I’m at the beach last week, some interesting things happened to me. I don’t know if I’ll write about all of them or not, but this one has definitely been on my mind.
My wife and I (that still sounds strange to say!) were parked at a public beach access and unloading chairs and towels and stuff from the trunk of the car while another family were getting into their SUV in the parking spot directly across from us. A girl (I couldn’t tell how old…somewhere between 18 and 21) was furiously shaking the top she had on over her bathing suit and grumbling. After a few seconds, one of the grumbles became discernable: “I hate sand!”
My immediate response (out loud to my wife, probably audible to the girl as well…I need to work on that), was, “why in the world would you come to the beach if you hate sand????”
As we walked on, the girl had gotten into the SUV, only to jump out and begin dancing again…”D*&$#! There’s sand everywhere!”
I had to laugh. Probably completely insensitive of me, but I can be like that. This girl was just totally cracking me up. It has, however, left me to ponder.
We’re just never really happy with things, are we?
My wife and I were seriously stressed about a week or two ago with our finances. We signed a lease on a new place assuming the salary she would make in her field, but after finishing her master’s degree, it took forever to find a job. The place was not affordable on my income alone, but at the last moment, she signed a contract (literally two days before the wedding). A God thing? Totally. Was it the salary she could have made? Maybe not, but it’s enough. We’re not wealthy, but we’re not poor either. We’re comfortable.
So I’m reading Proverbs this week and I re-aquaint myself with King Agur’s prayer: “Give me neither poverty nor wealth; feed me with the food I need. Otherwise, I might have too much and deny You, saying,’Who is the Lord?’or I might have nothing and steal, profaning the name of my God” (Proverbs 30:8b-9, HCSB). There’s a reason that this is classified as wisdom literature. Our culture pressures us to want, ask for, strive for, and expect, the absolute most we can get. Of everything. Money, success, sex, fun…everything. That’s not what God encourages us to do. He encourages us to want enough.
I think enough differs from person to person. Certainly I know people who have been blessed with, and have the hearts to handle, much more wealth than I. I think that, in God’s eyes, that’s “enough” for them. I think what we have currently is “enough” for us.
And that’s what I should want. Instead of going to the beach and complaining about the sand, instead of wanting to “have my cake and eat it too,” instead of trying to soak the most material satisfaction I can get from life, perhaps I should loosen up, enjoy what is given to me, and do the best I can with it from there.
Maybe that would be enough.