The late Charles Spurgeon said, “You say, ‘If I had a little more, I should be very satisfied.’ You make a mistake. If you are not content with what you have, you would not be satisfied if it were doubled.”
I just got back from Colombia this past week and have been pondering over the trip. We visited a school in the slums of Cali that was established by the local church for young children who have one parent or none. Some of the children have been farmed out to aunts, uncles, grandparents or anyone who can take them. These children have nothing. I couldn’t help but marvel at the joy that a simple hug would bring to those precious children who are starved for love.
I wanted to take them all home with me and lavish them with clothes, food and gifts that our children here in the states enjoy. And, I realized how discontented we can be at times when we have so much. Bottom line, contentment is not about what you have or don’t have.
Discontentment stems from ingratitude and a belief that God doesn’t love you or have your best interests at heart. Contentment releases you to enjoy all the good things that God has given you. Contentment comes from a grateful heart and a grateful heart has no room for envy.
Seriously, our world promotes discontentment and dissatisfaction with what we have. Clever marketing techniques continually remind us of the newest gadget or advancement in technology. We are convinced that our lives won’t be complete unless we obtain them. We tend to compare our lifestyles and possessions with those around us which only adds to more discontentment. In addition, the enemy is always present to remind us of what we don’t have — whether it is possessions or anything that your heart desires.
If your happiness or contentment is determined by what you have — or even another person, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. Life is like a vapor the scriptures tell us – here today and gone tomorrow! Things rust and decay and are replaced by more advanced technology.
If you allow your contentment to come from your relationship with Jesus Christ, you will never be disappointed or discontented.
The Apostle Paul experienced moving in the power of the Holy Spirit and being loved by God’s people. He also experienced being jailed and stoned by angry mobs. He stood before kings and also endured hardships of every kind. Paul assures us in Philippians 4:11 that his contentment comes from his relationship with Christ, not his circumstances.
Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.
I don’t know about you, but I need a constant reminder that I need to cultivate a heart of gratitude and contentment in a discontented world. I want to know that I am complete in Him and to be grateful for all the blessings that I enjoy.