But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. I Timothy 6: 6 – 8
We all probably have that list in our heads of the things we think we need and of all the things we would like to have! Why is having so much “stuff” so important to us? We may even envy or covet what others have and feel that what we have doesn’t “line” up with everyone else. We always want more. It seems to be the American way, but we know from Scripture that it isn’t God’s way!
I once read that one of the most difficult Christian virtues to obtain is true contentment. I believe it! For most of us, we can honestly say that our satisfaction depends on the circumstances in our lives. When things are going well and we have what we need and want, we are happy and content, but when they aren’t, we are dissatisfied and just waiting for the day when life can be good again.
If only we could think differently and have an inward attitude of gratitude, peace with life, and rest in God’s sovereignty no matter what is going on around us. True contentment doesn’t come naturally or easily for us. It requires effort, and we often forget that we really do have a choice. We can choose to find joy in life or we can choose to be dissatisfied and miserable. And sometimes we may just need to ask God to give us the strength and grace to accept what we cannot change.
If only we could focus more on what is truly important, such as our families, our friends, and our relationship with God instead of trying to acquire possessions, wealth, and status, we could enjoy our time on this earth so much more. As this verse so wisely reminds us, these things are of little importance when our lives come to an end.
True contentment begins in the heart – recognizing all the many blessings God has given us and trusting Him to provide all we will ever need.
Our most gracious and loving Father, we thank you for the gift of life and for all your goodness to us. Give us a heart filled with contentment and peace, relying on your strength and grace. Amen