ODJ: Being Content

August 19, 2018 

READ: Philippians 4:10-20 

At the moment I have all I need—and more! (v.18).

My life’s been enriched by a friend who’s consistently content. Rather than lamenting what she doesn’t have, she’s chosen to trust Jesus and find deep satisfaction in Him. Through her, I’ve gained a deeper understanding of this valuable quality, and I’ve experienced how wonderful it is to be around someone who displays such deep contentment with God, and with the life and circumstances He’s provided for her.

I’ve also further grasped that contentment isn’t merely a result of our environment or experiences but a state of heart, mind and soul that needs to be cultivated, as the apostle Paul explains in Philippians 4:10-20.

Giving glory to God, Paul humbly shared that he hadn’t always been content, but that he learned to be. To ‘learn’ means to acquire knowledge by studying. In this passage we observe that Paul’s contentedness (in all circumstances—whether in times of need or abundance) increased as He studied God and grew in understanding of “Christ, who gives me strength” (v.13).

Contentment in Christ prompted Paul to affirm the Philippians and say to them, “As you know, you Philippians were the only ones who gave me financial help when I first brought you the Good News and then travelled on from Macedonia. No other church did this. Even when I was in Thessalonica you sent help more than once” (vv.15-17). Instead of asking for more, he was content with what they’d given him.

When we’re content in Jesus, it gives us freedom to extend grace to others. And as we increasingly grasp that He’s the secret to finding joy “in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little” (vv.12-13) we’ll learn, like Paul, to be content in all circumstances.

—Roxanne Robbins

365-day plan: John 11:37-57

What does Paul say is “great wealth” in 1 Timothy 6:6? Why? 
How are you learning to be content? Why will you be even more satisfied with whatever you have as you draw closer to Jesus?