88 ContentmentPosted: February 13, 2014
Secret number 20 to finding humility is Contentment.
Someone we know had the following thoughts on discontent: By nature we are discontented. No matter what we get in life, we will never be fully satisfied. We can find something to complain about in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. If that is really true (and I find it true for myself), then how can we find real contentment?
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him Who gives me strength. Philippians 4:12-13
Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5
The Apostle Paul experienced times of plenty as well as times of lack. He fully expected those to whom he wrote to experience similar times of plenty and lack. He indicated that we can find contentment in either situation. When times are good we expect the good times to continue into the future. We can become disappointed when we enter a time of lack. One clue to contentment is to enjoy the present. Life is a roller coaster. We need to expect the ups and downs, throw our hands in the air and say, “wheeeee!”
Paul gives us another clue: “I can do everything through Him Who gives me strength.” We need to find our life in Jesus. Hebrews 13:5 implies a similar thought. We can be content with what we have because we have God’s presence with us. No matter what is taken from us, no one can take God’s presence from us. By the way, the hands in the air could be utilized to praise Him for the adventure and also that He is trustworthy and knows the track and has made it stable.
Okay, so, this is all very fine theology, but when we are hungry or thirsty, cold or hot, in need or full, theology does little to comfort us. Times of lack give us the opportunity to learn real contentment, not just lofty ideals of how one could possibly become content. When we lack, we connect with our brokenness as well become aware of how much we cannot control our circumstances. When we feel our need we can become scared. This is especially true for those of us who deal with perfectionism. Neediness is terrifying because perfectionism is about proving ourselves to others and even more to self how not in need we are.
Contentment does not mean denying feeling needy. Rather, contentment means finding peace and joy even in the midst of lack and neediness. Humility comes in at this point when we own our need. Lasting peace and joy come from the Lord Himself not from the circumstances of our lives being perfect. When in need, we cry out to Him and find the Lord meeting our hearts. He says, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” We find ultimate satisfaction in Christ
Learning the secret of contentment,
Noah & Marguex Woodrich
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