The Virtue of Contentment / WK 5 / Day 3


(We are in Wk 5 in our book, but it is the 6th Wk of our study together!)

As we continue to spend time with the Lord, allowing the Holy Spirit to speak to our hearts, it is my prayer that the Lord will increase your confidence in knowing WHO HE IS, and WHO YOU ARE IN HIM.  I am prayerful, that the truth that He has deposited in your hearts over the course of this study, will penetrate deeply…and will bring about change in your life!

Read from Isaiah 55

10″For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
And do not return there without watering the earth
And making it bear and sprout,
And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater;
11So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth;
It will not return to Me empty,
Without accomplishing what I desire,
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.

12“For you will go out with joy
And be led forth with peace;
The mountains and the hills will break forth into shouts of joy before you,
And all the trees of the field will clap their hands.

13“Instead of the thorn bush the cypress will come up,
And instead of the nettle the myrtle will come up,
And it will be a memorial to the LORD,
For an everlasting sign which will not be cut off.”

As we studied 2 Corinthians 12 : 8-10 we learned that the Lord’s POWER is made PERFECT in our weakness.

“Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

My summary…my biggest “take away” from week 2  is below:)

The Virtue of Contentment / WK 5 / Day3 / Sue Carroll

LET’s LET GO of the quest to achieve perfection.  Why do we want to work so hard to achieve so much less than what our God has prepared for us?


That sounds really GOOD to me!

I’m not saying that we should unleash our weaknesses on everyone around us:)  BUT, as we confess them to our God (who already knows them) we will BRING THEM OUT of the dark cave they have been “festering in” and OUT INTO THE LIGHT for the LORD to penetrate and illuminate…then we will have victory over them…and “His power will be made perfect in us” displaying His Glory, as we EXPERIENCE HIS FAITHFULNESS!

I can’t draw a straight line.  I don’t even try! Instead, I look for ways to create “imperfection.”  I letter with varying styles and shapes with the intention of NOT creating a perfectly spaced, perfectly ordered “piece.”  I surrender my weaknesses, allowing them to be transformed into something beautifully imperfect.

If everything :”looked perfect” we would quickly be bored and uninspired! God created us to be unique. NO ONE IS QUITE LIKE YOU! Are you questioning God’s workmanship as you see yourself as “less than?”

The Virtue of Contentment / WK 5 / Day3 / Sue Carroll

Celebrate your weakness as you allow the Lord’s POWER,  to be made perfect within you! Celebrate your uniqueness…smile at your style! It’s all your own…and God sees you as BEAUTIFUL…and so do I:)

As we let go of our “need to achieve” perfection, we will find contentment in His.

Bless you!


The Virtue of Contentment / WK 5 / Day 2

Hello Sisters!

If you are following along in your study (The Virtue of Contenment) we are REVIEWING AND REFINING what the Holy Spirit has revealed to us each week, for the last 4-5 weeks.

For me, my biggest “take away” from our first week was this, from Paul…


Below is a visual of that truth with a plan of action.

Whenever the Lord so graciously reveals Himself through the Holy Spirit, there is an action we must take.  Without one, we will remain unchanged.

The Virtue of Contenment / WK 5 / Day 2/ Sue Carroll

The Virtue of Contenment / WK 5 / Day 2/ Sue Carroll

What is your Biggest “take away” from Week 1 of our study?

I’d love to hear!



The Virtue of Contentment / WK 5 / Day 1

Hi everyone!  I can’t believe we have come to our last week of study!

I pray that you will finish strong!

This week is all about STEEPING in what the Lord has been teaching you these last 5 weeks. It is a time for re-visiting each week’s key points… allowing the Holy Spirit to confirm what you need to know.  I believe that as you prayerfully create and overview or summary for each week, the truth you have learned will “stick!”

On Page 97 in your book, there is a quote by Jeremiah Burroughs that sums up the secret of Contentment.

He encourages us by saying that we will reach this place of peace and joy in all circumstances, when GOD’S WILL IS MY WILL.

This reminds me of Jesus’ prayer in the garden.  Even though…

-He knew His friends (& disciples) wouldn’t  stay awake to pray

-He knew that Judas had betrayed Him

– He knew that His Disciples would deny Him

-He knew that the world would mock Him

-He knew rejection, pain, loss, betrayal,..

AND…He knew that He would be crucified, separated from the Father…on our behalf…STILL…

Jesus, prayed for us all. Not only His chosen few, but those who would know Him through the testimony of these men.

He prayed for you and me…what a LOVE.I cannot begin to understand the mysteries of God.

How can we be “one” with Jesus and “one” with the Father?

We don’t deserve this honor, this privilege …

and yet, Jesus states that this is truth.

If we can be one with Jesus, as He is one with the Father, we can love like Him, think like Him, Have victory like Him…

We can grow to be more and more like Him each day, through the POWER of the cross.

Take some time each day this week to do just thatThe Virtue of Contentment/ WK5/ DAY 1Invest in your relationship, the blessings will be immeasurable!

Finish strong!



The Virtue of Contentment / WK 4 / Day 5


Below is a review of our past 4 weeks of study in “The Virtue of Contenment”

In Week 1 we “dug deeper” into

our “feelings” or “emotions” (that are often NOT rooted in truth) and the roller coaster we can be on that keeps us from the steady peace & joy the Lord desires for us to have (contentment)

In Week 2 we “dug deeper” into

our relationships…both with each other, and with the Lord, and how past experiences can influence the way we “see” things…distorting our view of WHO we are and WHOSE we are.                                                                (Distracting our focus, adding confusion and creating discontent)

In Week 3 we “dug deeper” into

the importance of operating from our “owners manual” ( God’s Holy Word) and the effects of “running our machine” outside the “manufacturers guidelines”.   Sticking to our owner’s manual (God’s Word) under the instruction of the Holy Spirit will prevent our wandering, which leads to sin, which leads to consequences, which leads to despair…lacking peace. (contentment)

This week (week 4) we “dug deeper” into

the inward “glance.”   Our tendency to focus inward, striving to attain what the Lord longs to bless us with -trying to take it for ourselves using  our own strength… The quest for perfectionism…and the problem of looking BACK. We have also been considering our fears…their roots…and the power we can have in Christ to overcome them!

These behaviors keep us from moving forward “toward the prize of our upward call” which will lead to “God’s peace that guards our hearts” from these very stumbling blocks. The stumbling blocks that keep us from “finding joy in all circumstances.”

To restate one of our scripture references from this week…

4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  -Philippians 4:4-9

THE LORD IS AT HAND                                                                                 (we don’t have to be anxious-HE’S in charge! )

PRAY (with gratitude) ABOUT EVERYTHING!                                                  (we don’t have to try to be perfect- God’s power is made PERFECT in our weakness)

MAKE YOUR REQUESTS KNOWN                                                               (our God is listening and is faithful to answer)

GOD TEACHES US THINGS WE DO NOT KNOW                                              (the Holy Spirit reveals truth that is beyond our human understanding and reasoning- RIGHTEOUS THINKING VS. HUMAN REASONING)

GOD’S PEACE/ PRESENCE WILL GUARD OUR HEARTS AND MINDS (God protects us from sin that causes separation from God, destruction, confusion, lack of peace, and discontent)

OUR HEARTS NEED PROTECTING! God would not say it, if it were not so.

HEARTS…THEY ARE THE “WELL SPRING OF LIFE”                                                  EVERYTHING FLOWS FROM OUR HEART! (What goes in, comes out)

Proverbs 4:23-26

23 Keep your heart with all vigilance,
for from it flow the springs of life.
24 Put away from you crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from you.
25 Let your eyes look directly forward,
and your gaze be straight before you.
26 Ponder the path of your feet;
then all your ways will be sure.

The NIV puts it like this :
Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.


Let’s consider our lack of protection.

We throw all kinds of things in our heart…

unhealthy relationships /  lies we believe (because we haven’t measured them with God’s Word : Acts 17:11) / daily, worldly, media / idols …(anything that rules our day apart from God)

God is telling us we must be pro ACTIVE…BUT, in order to do so, we must have GOD’S peace if we are to protect our hearts

The Virtue of Contentment/ WK4 /DAY 5/ Sue CarrollThat just says it all doesn’t it?!

The PEACE that guards our hearts comes from KNOWING God.

(Abiding) -click on abiding to visit the pre-study on this topic!

We have something valuable to GUARD.  It is THE MOST IMPORTANT THING we are to DO…ABOVE ALL ELSE…GUARD your HEART.

When we leave our heart UNGUARDED… the enemy steals what God “longs” to bless us with. (Isaiah 30:18)

The root of our DISCONTENT is an unguarded heart.

This idea of contentment…is a REAL THING that we can have.

It is something in which the fruits are plentifu!

love. joy. peace. patience. kindness. gentleness. faithfulness. goodness. & self-control.


Only the Father, can reveal to you what you’ve “let in” and only through Christ, can it be “cleaned out.”


Psalm 51:10
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.”

The Virtue of Contentment/ WK 4/ DAY 5 / Sue Carroll

Let’s get to some cleaning…


Abiding in Christ leads…

to NOT being led by our emotions

to NOT being defined by others, but by our God alone

to following our “owner’s manual” (God’s Word)- looking to our CREATOR and FATHER for WHO we are and WHOSE we are, having FAITH that He will provide all that we need

to moving forward in the direction God has for us to go, instead of taking the wheel ourselves…pushing beyond the past, to see the hope and good purpose that is before us in every circumstance

to protection against the enemy and the things of this world that cause us to look inward instead of upward.

to experiencing the presence of God every moment of every day…

experiencing His sovereignty, faithfulness, provision, and love.

It is within His presence, that we can know contentment.

Peace in every circumstance. Joy in all things.

Guard your heart. Practice His presence.


’til next week!

In Him,


The Virtue of Contentment / WK 4 / Day 4

Week 4 / Day 4


We strive for it.  We can fall under “it’s authority.”  Can’t we?

Sisters, this happens in the most subtle of ways…

We compare ourselves to others…defining our “worth” according to our “view” of “measuring up.”

We walk into a room full of women, and it’s the first thing we do, isn’t it?

The Lord has more important things for us to do!  He has purpose for us in each day.  Things to learn, people to serve, glory to proclaim in His name.  Instead of walking into a room of women with the purpose of serving, we walk in with an expectation of receiving our worth.

I lived many many years in this place, and if I’m honest, I still struggle with it.  Am I “hip” enough, thin enough, accomplished enough, smart enough….ENOUGH ENOUGH ENOUGH!

We have bought into this idea of attaining perfection from “the world.”

The thing is, for those who are “in Christ” we are one with Him, as He is one with the Father.  (John 17) Within this truth lies our worth.  It will never come from what the world says we are, but what God says we are.

…and we are His❤️

I thought so much about all of this after spending some “live chat” time with my online Bible Study Sisters.  Even within this process of Bible Journaling we compare ourselves…our work, our heart, our art.

I know, it’s hard not to.  This is what drives me to produce Doodle 101’s.  I don’t want the enemy to trip you up because you “can’t create” a picture of what the Lord is teaching you.  Many have a desire to create, but feel they don’t know how…so they don’t want to try or after trying, feel they don’t “measure up.”

The truth is, it’s not for the world that we spend time in this place of study, fellowship and creative process with the Lord.  It is to GROW in our relationship with Him.  It is to surrender our will to His will, falling under His Sovereignty, to recognize our need AND our inheritance as we listen…as we get still.

Yes, it is a treat to create something beautiful that we can look at to remember this place where our GOD met with us.  But “BEAUTY is in the eye of the BEHOLDER…”

God ALWAYS sees His children as BEAUTIFUL. Remember,  He created us with His own hands, and HE has created YOU in HIS image, with a unique “fingerprint” all your own! He didn’t create us to be cookie cutters:)

I LOVE to see others create in ways that I wouldn’t even consider.  We ALL have a unique perspective, and I SEE this as BEAUTIFUL every time.

So, to end this post, I re-created the “thickening process” in a Doodle 101 with the hope that you will see how SIMPLE HAND LETTERING can be transformed by adding elements that require NO ARTISTIC SKILL.

But, wait…when you are finished…you WILL have created art…that is BEAUTIFUL…to the “EYE OF THE BEHOLDER.”

Know you are LOVED.

& remember, that “PERFECTIONISM” can rule you, and steal your joy! (Contentment)


The Virtue of Contentment/ WK4/ DAY 4/ Sue Carroll

The Virtue of Contentment/ WK4/ DAY 4/ Sue Carroll

I adore you:)






The Virtue of Contentment / WK 4 / Day 3

Welcome to Day 3 of Week 4!

Below is our second scripture study for this week.

Philippians 3:12-16
12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. 16 Only let us hold true to what we have attained.

This is a passage that I keep close to my heart.  It is truth that became vivid through personal experience.  I had the privilege of attending our church’s Discipleship School taught by my beloved Brother Larry Reese,  In class, Brother Larry helped me to better understand how our past influences our ability to move forward in the direction God has prepared for us to go.

For most of us, our “track record” with the past is greater than our “track record” with the Lord.

For this reason, we tend to look back or “fall back” because this is what we most know. We have experience “there.”

This is a pattern of behavior we must give to the Lord to break.

Paul says it above…

“forget what lies behind and strain forward to what lies ahead”

Hold on to what you have “attained” – practice what you have learned ❤️

We must be rooted in truth with our eyes fixed on Jesus…

This is our “way” to the “prize”…our purpose…toward the “call” God has for us in Christ Jesus.

Increase your “track record” with the Lord, by abiding…every day.

This is how we can overcome our tendency to look back.

The Virtue of Contentment / WK 4 / Day 3/ Sue Carroll/Doodle101

The Virtue of Contentment / WK 4 / Day 3/ Sue Carroll/Doodle101

Keep your eyes fixed ahead…on Jesus:)

In Him,