If Only I Had a…
Verse 11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.
While being thankful for his friends help Paul lets them know that he isn’t asking for more help. His reason for not asking for more is because he knows the secret to being satisfied with what he has no matter his circumstances.
First we need to pay attention to a key word in our verse for the day, learn. Being content isn’t a natural occurrence in our lives. None of us are born with a complete satisfaction of whatever state we are in. In fact quite the opposite is true. Even as infants we see things and want them. The desire for things only grows as we age. This is why it is important that we learn to be content.
Learning takes making many little intentional decisions that we don’t need that thing that has caught our eye, whether that be an item, a relationship, job or many other things. We have to learn to view each item in relation to our relationship with Christ. This takes changing our mindset. We have to make the choices that are based on contentment.
The choice that Paul had made that brought about his contentedness was that he knew his true treasure was Christ. What Paul had learned was that only Jesus could satisfy. The things of this world only satisfy temporarily but Christ satisfies for eternity. Being content isn’t so much about not wanting more and it isn’t just being okay with what we already have. No, the truth is that we have to understand we will never be satisfied by the things that can rust, burn and mold.
Paul’s point in our key verse for the day is that he had learned to be content in every circumstance. This is a reminder that our circumstances can change at the drop of a hat and whether we like them or not we have to go through them. But we need to pay attention to how we are reacting to our situation. We can choose to fuss and complain when our situation is less desirable or we can choose to trust God in the circumstance. We can rejoice when given abundance but we are not to worship the abundance. Contentment is knowing who supplies our needs and looking to Him no matter our circumstances.
Making It Personal
How content do you think you are with your life? Do you think that there are things that would make you content? What decisions do you need to make to be content?
Making It Personal Kids
What are some things that you think would make your life what you want it to be? What would you think if Jesus said you didn’t need it? Can you learn to be happy with only what Jesus says you can have?
Father, please forgive us for not seeing You as enough in our lives. Please help us see the danger of putting our faith in the things of this world. In Jesus’ name, amen.