Originally posted August 5, 2008 on Facebook
Someone asked me how I felt the other day, and my answer was “content.” I’m paraphrasing, but the reply to my statement was something like “sorry to hear that.” We went on to discuss that I felt like “content” was a good thing and a great way to feel. On the other hand, their impression was that “content” has a negative connotation, and that someone who was “just content” should strive towards something better. That got me thinking about what it really means to be content.
What is the source of contentment in our lives? Many people search all kinds of areas for contentment….other people, relationships, kids, money, alcohol, drugs, causes, things, etc. You name it, and people try to use it to find contentment. The problem is that as soon as we get to a point that seems like contentment with one thing, some other desire or perceived need arises and we become discontent all over again.
We live in a culture built around discontentment. Look at any advertisement on television. The basic premise is that you should not be happy with what you have, and the next thing you buy will bring that happiness and contentment. Ironically, that next always happens to be the thing that’s being advertised. One more new thing, and you will be happy! We have grown up in, and live in, a culture which is discontent at its very core. We seek contentment everywhere we never truly find it because we neglect the source of true contentment. I believe the high divorce rate in our culture is a glaring example of how we have built a culture of discontentment. Rather than “rejoicing in the wife of our youth,” so many become discontent and convince themselves that they can do better the next time. The increased divorce rates for subsequent marriages, though, indicates that this is not the case.
So, where do we find true contentment? We find it only in God. He is the only thing in life which can give us true contentment. The great thing about the contentment that we find with God is that it spreads to other areas of our lives. It is unrealistic to think to something we buy can make us truly happy and content. Only the maker of those things holds that power in his hands. It is unfair to expect that another person can bring us that contentment. Only the creator of that person holds that gift. True contentment in our lives can only come from our Lord and Savior.Read More