Imagination is a powerful and welcome gift of God that has sustained sailors for months at sea, prisoners locked in cells for years, writers crafting clever yarns without ever leaving the confines of their desk. And, as one dear friend of mine frequently says, “Some things are better left in the imagination.“ Meaning that what we think will satisfy us if we can just obtain it, often falls short of the mark. The real thing pales in response to our ideal. It’s sometimes better to have imagined the ideal than be disappointed by the paltry, faulty reality.
Who of us has not seen an advertisement for some delectable thing — a pair of faux fur lined boots, a new fleece jacket, a ‘chotsky’ that promises to solve our kitchen woes? After we’ve purchased the item, we’re surprised to find that we’re dissatisfied with its inability to measure up. Then, there we are, back in the queue at the Post Office, returning an online purchase that had seemed so promising when we had originally thought about it. It might, actually, have been better left in our imagination. We could have dreamed of our ideal and been content with the boots that have trudged with us through the woods, with the fleece jacket that has been a companion on many a frosty morning. We could have realized that an implement in our kitchen is ready to serve us in a dual capacity.
Imagination and contentment can go hand in hand. Imagination fuels our mind to new solutions to old problems and energizes us toward fresh possibilities. Contentment is balm to the soul. We don’t always need what we think we must have. We can let our imagination carry us forward while contentment centers us in peace.