Stuff. We have tons of it only to want more. Guilty as charged right here. For many years I mistakenly believed that if I just had the 'perfect' house, my life would be complete. During this lonely period I would often go for walks looking at homes that I falsely assumed would be the answer to this deep and dark hole. I would dream about what my life would be like if only I lived in a certain house. If you wrestle with these feelings, outlets like Pinterest only manifest this hole. Have you ever seen something magical, like the perfect mudroom, and thought "Wow! Our laundry would be clean all the time IF ONLY I had that mudroom." It's ludicrous when you actually stop and think about it but it's such an easy trap to fall into.
Looking back, I realize this "if only" habit started when I was a child. As a little girl I was absolutely certain that the pretty house with the perfect yard meant the family living inside was everything my family was not. I would peddle as fast as my little legs could carry me on my brother's old banana seat bike (remember those?) trying to get as far away as I could from the chaos ensuing in my own house. I was searching for what I thought would be the answer to all my problems. Living in the "if only I had..." world is a sad place to be and has been my go-to place for years. The "if only" world is full of false comfort. My imagination is fierce and I could literally see what the "if only" place looked like. At some point, I finally figured out that this constant unsettled feeling in my heart would not be solved by living in a different house or city, creating new relationships or even having everything checked off my to-do list. I tried all that. None of it worked. The only way my heart would be full is if I made the choice to fill it up with what I have. What do I have? I have been blessed with amazing children, a devoted husband, friends that are like family, family that are my friends and most importantly- the relationship I have with God. Everything that's worth anything in my life can't be bought. The 'who' in your life is really what it's all about.
Am I the only one that grew up dreaming all the "if onlys"? I'd love to hear from you! Leave any of your thoughts in the comment section below.