Wednesday, October 29, 2014

CONTENTMENT

Where would we be if everybody, believer or non-believer, was content with their life? There would be no advancement, no promotion, no growth and/or maturity.

For the Believer in Christ, my belief is that Contentment in Scripture does not mean thinking you have arrived where you need to be for the rest of eternity once you accept Christ as your Savior. It does not call for the believer to sit on his/her butt or be inactive. I believe The Bema Seat Judgment will prove this out when believers will be rewarded for their deeds by a purifying, Holy fire - some escaping the flames with just their salvation (1 Corinthians 3:11-15). So, if Contentment is not idleness what is it?

Contentment is not being anxious about anything, but trusting God in everything. The song "Don't Worry, Be Happy" applies here. But more than just being happy and waiting on God to move, many times he calls for believers to be proactive. Psalm 46:10 states "Be still and know that I am God." However, "Be still" in the original Hebrew (raphah) does not mean a compete halt to activity. The word means to slacken or continue your activity while waiting. Allow me to add - continue your PROACTIVE activity while you are waiting. Not that you would be guilty of jumping the gun like Abraham did with Hagar. Abraham flat out distrusted and disobeyed God about the promised child - Issac. If you keep obeying God and are proactive in seeking out His will for your life, while you are still and watching for God's move, then I believe you are in line with contentment.

If you lift Philippians 4:12 out of the Bible by itself and do not interpret it in context - Contentment will be misunderstood. Here is that verse alone - I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 

Contentment or the lack thereof is often found alongside money and it's trappings throughout Scripture.Taken in context or looking at the surrounding verses and what Paul was saying and doing - we find that Paul was thanking the church at Philippi for their monetary gift of support. In his letter of thanks he mentions how he has seen rough times and great times of life, but he has learned The Secret of Contentment or non-anxious living - I can do everything through him who gives me strength. (v.13) The next word of the next verse - "Yet" - signifies that even though God had Paul's back, the church in Philippi did the right thing - they "shared in" Paul's "troubles". - Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles.

It is not enough to be idle and it is not worth it to be anxious about anything. In fact, the rest of the Philippians 4:6 verse many of you are thinking of right now says, "but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." With a hotline to Heaven available to you at any second, anxiety should be a thing of the past. In the meantime, Christ uses His parable of The Ten Servants to communicate that Christians should Occupy until He comes back. Luke 19:13 - And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy tillI come. (KJV) Or in the New International version it is stated like this - So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten minas. 'Put this money to work,' he said, 'until I come back.' No halting of ministry in that picture.

Knowing who you are and what you have in Christ Jesus at all times while continuing to fight the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:12) is how I view Biblical Contentment.