Contentment

November 4, 2015

                                                 Contentment

One of the benefits of being a Christian is the contentment it offers.  Unfortunately, not all Christians are enjoying it.  There are two economic extremes in life.

Some apparently give little importance to material possessions and the comforts they provide.  For them, poverty is just a way of life.  Many of them live that way because of their addiction.  In sections of our inner cities we find them begging for food and sleeping on sidewalks at night.  Would you say they have found contentment?  I hardly think so.

At the other extreme are those who live in luxury.  Their houses are mansions that sit on an acreage.  Apart from that, they have a summer home on a lake, the value of which far exceeds the value of the homes most people live in.  They spend more money on cars than most people spend on their house.  Does their abundance and luxury guarantee them contentment?  If so, why is it that they are most often the ones who occupy the couches of psychiatrists?  Why do they consume so much alcohol and take so many tranquilizers?

If money can’t buy contentment and poverty doesn’t provide it, what is it then?  Contrary to what many people think, contentment isn’t found in our living conditions.  If we can honestly say we are content, it means that we are finding satisfaction and fulfilment in our life.  This is something that can best be found by living the Christian life.

If we will trust God for it, he has promised to give us all that pertains to life and godliness.  II Peter 1:3 says, “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue.”  If we want to find all that pertains to life, we must also seek all that pertains to godliness.  We will never find true contentment if we leave God out of our lives.  II Peter 1:4 goes on to say, “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.”

God has given us great and precious promises. In Psalm 37:4 we find one of those precious promises.  “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”  The reason why many aren’t content is because they are seeking for things that either aren’t good for them, things they shall never have, or things that will not give them contentment.  I once read that after Nelson Rockefeller made his first million dollars someone asked him if he was content.  He said “No.” Then that person asked him what it would take to make him content.  He said “Just a million more.”

To know that we are in the place God has for us, and that we are doing what he wants us to do, gives us contentment. Another reason why Christians can enjoy contentment is because a glori0us future awaits them.  In the Old Testament we read of Job.  He suffered great loss, but he said “Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.” (Job 1:21).  Later, in Job 19:25-27 he said, “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter upon the earth:   And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God.   Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.”

In Psalm 1:1-2 we find the contented man. There he is called “the blessed man.” “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.   But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”  The reason why many Christians aren’t content is because they haven’t surrendered their life to the Lord.  Many mistakenly translate that to mean a rigid restraint on many of the things that make life enjoyable.  To the contrary, it is that which brings contentment to life.

See also my article “Contentment; What is it?” under “Christian life.”

If you have questions or comments they can be sent to us at the following address: rusandmargaretgeorge@windstream.net

 

 

 

 

 

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