Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.
Just what does contentment look like anyway? The idea of being content is central to the Christian faith, or at least it’s supposed to be according to scripture. We’re called to be content with who we are, where we are, and what we have. But how many of us really are content in any of those areas? Why is all this so important? Because when we find the secret of being content, then we find real joy.
St. Paul apparently was content with all his circumstances by the time of the writing of the Philippian letter, which is amazing considering he was writing from a jail cell having been wrongly accused. In today’s devotional we need to take a long look in the mirror and ask ourselves just how content we really are. Our culture, by all indicators, suggests very few of us are actually content. Consumerism is rampant! We seem to always want something newer, bigger, and better than what we have.
About now some of you are asking the question we all do from time to time; “What’s wrong with wanting something new and better”. Well, the real answer is nothing is ‘wrong’ with it, but when our desire to have something newer, bigger, and better impedes our joy and contentment in what we have and who we are, then something is wrong – we’re really not thankful for what we have. We could always have something less, and believe me many people do.
For today, perhaps it’s enough for us to contemplate our level of contentment, or lack thereof? Tomorrow we will discuss the secret of being St. Paul learned of how to be content, and how we can learn it as well. So, as you contemplate how thankful you are for who you are and what you have, remember Christ is risen…and so are you!
Grace & Peace,
Father God, show me who I am to you, and reveal to me who it is you want me to be as your child. Convict me of any thanklessness I am showing in my life. Teach me how to be content in you. Amen. Alleluia!
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