Friday, October 24, 2014

The Course to Contentment (Continued)

I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret [of being content]—whether well-fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need. I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:12-13

We will not become content by natural flow in our lives.  There are steps we must take to gain control of the discontent we experience.  We continue these steps...

1.    Remember the cross - “For me, living is Christ and dying is gain” Philippians 1:21
The cornerstone of contentment is the cross. Remember what Jesus has done for us on the cross. Because of the cross we are freed from the chains of sin. Because of the cross, our salvation is secure. Because of the cross our friendship with God is possible. Because of the cross our future in heaven is guaranteed.

I am blessed by the cross of Christ! All else pales in comparison to His gift of righteousness and eternal life.  Keep things in perspective and contentment is yours.

2.    Let go of the past - “Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead” Philippians 3:13.

We cannot hope to ever gain contentment while holding on to past failures and mistakes—others or ours. There’s a difference between ignoring past wrongs and forgetting them. Forgetting means that we work through the process of forgiving others and allow God’s forgiveness to cover us and them.

We need to let go of such statements that begin with “I should have,” “If only,” and “If they hadn’t.” True forgiveness requires that we see the wrongs clearly, articulate them, release them to God, and then walk away from them. This process may take some time and some assistance, but without it we will never have a contented heart.

3.    Live one day at a time -  And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

Here we wait on God. We need to surrender our timetable and future to him.  Discontentment is often due to not only the wrong focus but our impatience with God’s response. Living each day in the light of his love and promise means trusting Him to meet our needs today and tomorrow as well.  Faith is a large part of contentment.

4.    Find sufficiency in Jesus Christ - I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

Christ has not given us unlimited strength; but we can experience contentment because we are a continual recipient of supernatural strength.

Contentment has learned the lesson that Jesus is enough. If you know Jesus, you have a God who hears you, the power of love behind you, the Holy Spirit within you, and all of heaven ahead of you. If you have Jesus, you have grace for every sin, direction for every turn, a candle for every corner, and an anchor for every storm. You have everything you need.

Scripture to Claim

And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:19

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