THIS WEEK – CONTENTMENT

Contentment– The action of satisfying; pleasure, delight, gratification. A source of pleasure ,delight or a condition or quality of being tranquil and happy. 

(Oxford Dictionary)



Contentment is an elusive goal in the United States today. More than 16% of Americans have experienced a bout of significant depression in 2019. I am sure even more have suffered a bout of depression during this pandemic. We all strive to have a life of contentment. Many seek peace and harmony by buying lots of stuff or working extremely hard and others by being daring or adventurous. Unfortunately, these endeavors fall short. Perhaps we should consider ways that is counterintuitive to our culture.

Greek philosopher Plato said,” The greatest wealth is to live content with little.” That would be a very novel idea for most of our world. To be content in the 21st century is to have many things. Contentment is found in the next promotion, winning an athletic competition, or reaching a savings goal. These things drive us, and the more of them we grasp, the more we want. There seems to be no end to our discontentment with what we have and our drive to have more. Those of us who proclaim to be followers of Christ know that he, like Plato, taught that wealth was in having less. Wealth is found in scarcity of the world ‘s goods. How do we achieve Christian contentment?

Christian contentment puts others first. We are willing to give up our seat at the table for another. Christians ask themselves if they really need that new car or another set of clothes. We learn to live with less so that we might have more. Our wealth and thus our contentment comes from learning to live with what we already possess. That opens the way for generosity and joy.

We also gain contentment by living a life of consistency and stability. Our lives are disciplined and ordered. A contented person knows what they will do each day. They do not demand to have a new novelty in their lives daily. Contented people enjoy the small things of life. They notice the blessings that God gives them every day. They are content to eat the food that is being provided and the work that lies ahead of them. Contented people stay put and make things work.

Contented people understand they are loved by God and the love of God is greater and deeper than any misfortune we may face. No matter what, God is there, and he will carry us through. Contentment is the acceptance of God’s love and care.

May we achieve Christian contentment today.



Quotes Banner

I have learned that to be with those I like is enough

― Walt Whitman

For after all, the best thing one can do when it is raining is let it rain.

― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I am content; that is a blessing greater than riches; and he to whom that is given need ask no more.

― Henry Fielding

Be content with what you have;

rejoice in the way things are.

When you realize there is nothing lacking,

the whole world belongs to you.

― Lao Tzu

He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.

― Socrates

Happiness is not a goal…it’s a by-product of a life well lived.

― Eleanor Roosevelt

Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.

― Epictetus

We are not rich by what we possess but by what we can do without.

― Immanuel Kant

At some point, you gotta let go, and sit still, and allow contentment to come to you.

― Elizabeth Gilbert

Contentment is natural wealth, luxury is artificial poverty.

― Socrates

The greatest wealth is to live content with little.

― Plato

Scripture BannerLet mutual love continue.

~~~Hebrews 13:1

For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

~~~Matthew 6:32-33

Of course, there is great gain in godliness combined with contentment; for we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it;

~~~1 Timothy 6:6-7

And he said to them, ‘Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.’

Wait for the Lord, and keep to his way,

  and he will exalt you to inherit the land;

  you will look on the destruction of the wicked.

~~~ Luke 12:15

‘Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

~~~Matthew 6:25-25

Not that I am referring to being in need; for I have learned to be content with whatever I have.

~~~Philippians 4:11

Wait for the Lord, and keep to his way,

  and he will exalt you to inherit the land;

  you will look on the destruction of the wicked.

~~~Psalm 37:34

I know that there is nothing better for them than to be happy and enjoy themselves as long as they live;

~~~Ecclesiastes 3:12

‘Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

~~~Matthew 5:6

And my God will fully satisfy every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

~~~Philippians 4:19

Prayer BannerLord, I ask that you allow me to find the path of contentment found in Jesus Christ. May I follow his way and be led by his light. Help me to discern that in Jesus all things are found. Wipe away the doubt and hesitation that robs me of the joy I receive through you. In the absence of hesitation and doubt there is true contentment. Hear us Lord.

Amen

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