When Is It Enough?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

I recently read this post of  Rachels' and this post of Shannan's so this has been on
my mind a lot lately...has got me thinking.
And really, it is one on my mind quite often really because it seems to be everywhere.
{And just so ya know, I don't pretend to have all the answers here, I am just kind of thinking out loud}
Why is it that nothing ever seems to be quite enough for so many people in the world today?
I know you know these people.
Bigger houses, bigger/newer cars, more stuff all the time.
Never quite satisfied.
Worried about their neighbors, their friends, their family and what they have...always
comparing what they have and don't have to others.
We have a really messed up idea of what success is and what happiness is today.
People look at certain families and friends and all they have and envy them...
without knowing their real story behind all of the stuff, what there life is like on the inside.

 Some people do appear to have a lot and maybe they do materialistically but maybe they
don't have enough of the most important things.
Or maybe they do and for some reason it still isn't enough.
I may not have as much as others but I have more than enough of what I need.
I do not wish to trade places with anyone because of what I think they have, I never have.
I have healthy children, a supportive hard-working husband that always puts the kids and
I before himself.
I have a safe home and plenty of clothes and food for my children.
We have heat and clean water and access to medical care and medication when we need it.
While there are sacrifices, becuase there are, I am able to stay home with my children...
something I would never trade for anything in the world.
Most importantly, we have wonderful supportive family around us.
Parents and grandparents and cousins, siblings and friends that are like family to us.
These are the important things.
It's not the other stuff.

This is one of the most important lessons in life I hope my children learn from us.
To be happy with what you have and where you are.
Money and things will not ultimately determine your happiness for you.
That comes from you and me, nowhere else, not from outside things or material possessions.

Please do not misunderstand me though.
I do not think that all people that drive new cars and live in big fancy houses 
"don't get it", that is not what I am saying.
And I am also not saying that I don't have more than enough, that I don't like to shop and
buy stuff we don't need...I am not saying that at all.
There is nothing wrong with having these things.
BUT there is something wrong with not recognizing/appreciating the truly important things in
life and living your life in comparison to other people.
There is something wrong with using these things to fill you up, in hopes of making yourself
happy or successful in the eyes of others.
To always be wanting more...and more...and more.
It will never be enough for them.
They will never be content.

I have a good friend who just left on a Mission Trip to Venezuela a few days ago.
This is her third trip in the last year like this, she recently went to Guatemala and Haiti as well.
She is a single foster parent to two siblings she adopted last year.
She has other kids, of all ages, in and out of her home all the time.
She is one of the most selfless people I know, she would help anyone in any way she could.
She works in Social Services, which is not the highest paying field, as we all know.
She does it though, she makes it work...she knows there is something bigger out there for her
and her family.
And thinking of the other stuff and then her a lot this week it all just seems so messed up.
I don't mean we all need to live that way either, like my friend...because obviously I don't...
but I admire her so much for the way she has chose to live and then we could all learn a lot
from people like her on what is truly important in life.
BUT, what I am saying is that we could all have a little less and look for happiness
and success in other ways...in other places.
By helping others, by doing more, by teaching our kids better.
Realizing what is truly important in life and living that way, not just saying we get it,
but living like we do.
Life is just way too short not to.

Well, that's me on my Soap Box this morning.
What do you think...are you rolling your eyes at me? think i sound too judgy? or do you
get just where i am coming from?
Whatever it is, tell me your thoughts on this, I would love to hear.
And have a great Wednesday, too.


  1. I get you. I've been on this soapbox before. What's even worse than those who are forever wanting and needing more, is when they get on THEIR soapbox about you being so simple. "you should want more for yourself and your family...blah blah blah." And it's not like I said anything to solicit a judgement. I was simply wearing overalls while 8 months pregnant and apparently overalls have been "out" for decades. I, of course, smiled and shoved more food in my mouth. Is it even worth an argument? No. I will keep being me with my kids and lack of fashion, and she will keep being her with her new boobs and spray tans and skin cancers because spray tanning came a little too late.

  2. well well well said :) Keeping up with the Jones...I always tease my husband and tell him..." Darling I thought we were the Jones ;)" A healthy family is really all I could ask for!

  3. Wonderful post! I think about this often.A little over a year ago my husband lost his job. Only weeks before our 4th child was born.
    It was scary but then he found some freelance work and was making about times as much before. Having all of this money and the new things were exciting.

    But after having her I got sick. I had a blood clot in my arm,had to give myself injections,take blood thinners and get my blood tested every few days because of the meds.Luckily I had my husband home to help take care of me and everyone else.

    I prayed.I told God that having the money and things were nice but I'd rather be healthy so I could just be a mom to my kids.After about 3 months the job was no more,hubby went back to a 9-5(that paid much less) and I was cleared with a clean bill of health!!

    Funny what you take for granted.The having new things was nice but feeling like a new me is even better.

  4. I love this post, Amy. And I agree with everything you say. Even though I am in a different country than you, we have the same problem sadly. But I think we (my family) has gone against the stream abit, when we decided that ok, our house is not finished (nor will it ever be), but we have a house! our car is not new, but hello we have a car! I can go on and on here. But we also have each other and we have experienced such love together as a couple and as a small family of 3 and I know, I just know that we are lucky for that. We also have taken in discharged animals and loved them almost as our children and as they say: you can see how human a country is by how they treat their animals.
    I agree, we need to stop this craziness!

    Thank you ♥

  5. Thank you for this. I am portrait and wedding photographer and it's so hard not to get caught up in the image of what I see through the lens...tens of thousands of dollars on weddings, huge wedding rings, lots of kids, beautiful clothes, etc. It's so hard to look down at myself and what I'm wearing or the shoebox sized house I return to. But inside that little house is warm. And my husband and son are always waiting for me and give me so much love. The clothes that I have keep me warm and for that I'm grateful. I'm grateful for it all. But it is a challenge...when I'm faced with the facade of how "others" live many times a week. Thank you for this post. This reminder.

  6. Oh, I get you Amy and I agree. We do with out so much for me to stay home and be with Noah. Sure I would love all the grand things but it is just not possible for us. I see so many others have everything and still not happy with their life. so having it all (material things) is not the end all to happiness. xo

  7. "comparison is the death of contentment and the thief of joy."
    i have to remind myself of this often! it is so easy to compare myself with others, but i know that God has blessed us beyond our deserving and created each of us unique and special, in His image, and we couldn't ask for anything more!
    thanks for the reminder, amy. :)

  8. That was beautifully said, thank you. Karlene

  9. um.
    what you are saying is true.....
    but...why are your pictures so rad today???
    i'm trying to listen to you and you just keep distracting me with pictures.
    now i have to go back and re-read.
    because the first time through seemed like blah blah blah-rad sunlight in the curtains. blah blah blah- amazing clouds.

    ok ok.
    i'm with you on contentment.
    we all have certain gifts that are specific to us, i think.
    god is teaching us each in a different way and each different lessons so it's our job to look around and learn from that.
    some may have an easy road in one area and a harder road in another and vice versa. but like you said, it is important to look deeper into a life than just the appearance of what someone has....or just mind your own business, right?

  10. I get you Amy, great post, (and I'm not distracted by your photo's),
    all the best, Maureen x

  11. Beautiful post. I guess people do that when they haven't really spent enough time trying to figure out what they REALLY want. They're still stuck in the phase of thinking about what they SHOULD want...but haven't listened to their own hearts. I don't envy them. That's a vicious life, never feeling full, always a little bit empty. Happiness far too fleeting to be real.

    I love your photos by the way. So subtle and gorgeous - especially that first one!

  12. Thank you. I was feeling sorry for myself this morning...no special reason, just fed up and dissatisfied with life in general. Then I read your blog, looked around me at the beauty of the day, and thought how lucky I am to be here to see it. My spirits are lifted. Blessings

  13. I think of this every time someone tells me my only child is spoiled. Truth is she purchased that expensive gadget herself with money she earned doing extra chores and she takes very good care of it. But they don't know that. They just think we lavish her. And why not-I would give her anything I could as long as it is within our means. Why - because she appreciates it. The minute she starts expecting to get whatever she wants...I know I have failed. It's my job to teach her how to live within our means and appreciate every opportunity given. Cause lord knows it can all change at a moments notice.

  14. Well said. Life is so not about having more, but the simple act of gratitude for what you do have! And the last photo is just amazing..I can just feel Gods Love pouring down! As always thanks for sharing your heart.


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