I am increasingly observing the lack of contentment within Christian circles. There is striving to do better. Striving for more of this and more of that. A yearning for more money, a bigger and better paying job so that we can own a bigger and better house. Then there is the strivings to build a bigger church. Strivings for a bigger congregation, a bigger ministry, bigger calling and even perhaps better grades and education.
These things in and of themselves are not necessarily bad. It can be good to earn more money. I look forward to that day myself. Currently I receive about $60 a fortnight through a study allowance as I am on a disability pension. My wife earns a reasonable income and so my pension is cut to virtually zero.
Yet; I have also learnt to be content with what I have. I have learnt to live within the boundaries of what is given me. And through contentment; I have great peace. I have peace that I am doing what God wants me to do. I have peace that God knows what he is doing and will do in my life.
I will admit that this hasn’t always been the case. In 2007 when I found myself in hospital for 2 months and in the following years I was in a place of great turmoil. There was no real peace. I had no real contentment. I was filled with confusion. I was filled with a yearning for why. I was filled with physical, emotional and spiritual pain. I also have to admit that even before this event, I didn’t really have nor experience much peace.
Scripture tells us to be content with what we have in the present! Don’t be discontented with what you don’t have. This can be hard to practice when you have bills to pay; mouths to feed and places to go….and we are filled with anxiety and fear about what will we do….and we find ourselves lacking peace.
Contentedness doesn’t mean we have to stay in the same situation we are in. It doesn’t mean being passive. By all means work hard. Study hard. Pray hard. Improve yourself. In doing so we are faced with a choice of either being impatient, fearful, worried, stressed and over worked…or we can do those things in a state of contentment; knowing that we are doing our best and that God is doing his best and through contentment…peace will be our reward.