What does it mean to be content?

21 02 2007

Philippians 4:12 (NIV)
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.

What does this verse say to you?  How many times have you complained to a friend about a work situation or life situation only to have them remind you that we have to learn to be “content” where we are?  As sincere as that friend may be (with a loving attitude and all) they could very well be giving you bad advice.

What does it mean to be content?  Check out this definition from www.dictionary.comsatisfied with what one is or has; not wanting more or anything else. 

While it’s true that we often struggle with being satisfied where we are in life (always believing the grass is green on the other side and striving to get to the other side), there are times when are yearnings for something different are not selfish or sinful.

Consider this.  What will your feelings or desires be like if you are ignoring God’s call on your life to do something different?  What if you actually have so little work to do at your place of employment, that your issue is becoming one of fulfillment as opposed to contentment?  It’s hard to be fulfilled if you aren’t really working.  God designed us to find satisfaction in our work.  Ecclesiastes 3:13 says “That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil—this is the gift of God.

Making this post one of my shortest, I end with these last few thoughts.

Try to be content wherever you are.  But if you are struggling with contentment, evaluate your situation.

Are you living in disobedience to God?  Does He have other work you should be doing?  Maybe that call to Africa is for you?

Is your job NOT providing you with any fulfillment?  If so, is that because you are slacking in your work?  Or is it due to the fact that there is absolutely no work to be done?

Finally … you may still be asking “How can I be content where I am?”

Well, you can read Philippians 4:12 above.  But don’t forget that verse 13 comes next.

Philippians 4:13 (NIV)
I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

We find contentment simply by remembering who it is that enables us to live this life on a daily basis.

Go with God,
Donald B


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5 responses

22 02 2007
totaltransformation

Good point. I have made it a point to turn everything over to God. My work, school, etc. I do my best, work hard, and leave the rest in God’s hands.

Right Now I am waiting to hear back from Ph.D. programs. It would normally be really stressful, but I pray each day,

“Lord, your will be done in my life. If you want me to take a path, please mark it; If you want me to walk through a door, please open it; If there is something I want that you don’t want for me, please close that door. Above all, I know you know what is best for me, you have a plan for me, so let your will be done in my life.”

-J. Kaiser

22 02 2007
Donald B

Awesome prayer to pray! Pray it daily and mean it! Thanks for the comment. Your prayer served to encourage me just now.

Go with God,
Donald B

22 02 2007
stevemarkle

Good post. Contentment is an interesting topic. God may not want always want us to be content. In fact, sometimes He may make us discontent to get us moving in a new direction. So, being spiritually sensitive to God’s leading in our lives…hearing His voice becomes extremely important as we seek fulfillment and contentment.
– S. Markle

22 02 2007
cumby

I fail the “contentment test” daily. I’m so driven that it causes me to get upset when things aren’t what I believe they should be, in ministry, marriage or family. I definitely need to meditate on this concept of Paul’s.

Tonight there were a few moments of this. After ministering at the prison, I stopped by Bible study at our church, sank into the pew and allowed myself to be ministered to. It was very peaceful.

10 06 2008
simi

i am content with what i have but still everyday am faced with the fear of loosing this feelin n through

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