Part 2 – The Secret of Contentment
We live in a crazy world, there is a lot of knowledge, but we need wisdom.
Our key verse for this series is
Proverbs 4:7 ‘Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment.’
We can all be content. Contentment is a promise of God for those who follow Him. It is a way of life.
We live in a strange culture:
‘NEVER HAVE WE HAD MORE AND ENJOYED LESS’
We are never happy where we are, we are only happy where we are not.
We have never had so much technology in history but it’s not making life much better is it?
An iPhone has replaced at least 15 things that we used to use in our lives. But we are not much happier for it.
We have Amazon that delivers whatever we want in 2 days. We have smart TVs, WiFi and NETFLIX.
But why are we not happy with what we have or where we are or who we are living our lives with?
What is creating discontent?
The enemy of contentment – “Comparison”
We live in a culture of comparison.
The Bible says in Proverbs 14:30
‘A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body; jealousy is like cancer in the bones.’
Comparison fills our minds with lies.
Comparison gives us:
The wrong perspective
Comparison tries to convince us everyday that what we have is not good enough.
Comparison has always been with us – but with social media it has multiplied out of proportion.
The wrong presumption
We are bombarded continually with the message:
IF I HAVE WHAT I DON’T HAVE I WILL BE HAPPY!
Comparison is a moving target – the more we have, we will be happy; but someone else will have more than me… it never ends.
It becomes a vicious cycle!
If we are not careful, we will start to live an illusion.
If we don’t break out of the cycle of comparison, we will end up living for:
The wrong person
We will put so much attention on them, we miss out on us!
We will put attention on what they have and miss out on what we have.
In 2013 a new word was discovered “FOMO”; Fear of Missing Out. This causes anxiety in people, but desiring growth and wisdom helps us live better.
This is what Solomon discovered. He had everything, but still had emptiness in his life. This is what he said:
Ecclesiastes 4:6 ‘Better to have one handful with quietness than two handfuls with hard work and chasing the wind.’
We should desire to live the life God has for us, full of tranquility, peace, and joy. Untouched by whatever is happening around us.
One of the greatest examples in the New Testament of a life of contentment is the apostle Paul. He wrote the words of Philippians 4:11-13 while a prisoner in Rome. Note he said “I have learned” – we are not born with this ability.
It takes intentionality, discipline, and determination.
The Secret of Contentment
1. Realize What We Have
No one has everything. We may not have all that we want, but we have way more than we deserve! Jesus in His grace had mercy on us. Read 1 Timothy 1:15-17.
2. Make God Our Source
Our discontentment is not about anything material. It is really about a void in our lives.
‘WE ARE ALL BORN WITH A GOD-SHAPED HOLE IN OUR HEARTS THAT ONLY HE CAN FILL’
There are no answers outside of God. Dig deeper in the salvation that God offers.
‘Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.’
3. Live Life on Mission
Paul reminds us in Philippians 3:12-14 to keep reaching for our dreams in Christ.
What dreams did Paul have before he met Christ? But he had now found a better way to live.
Paul lived with purpose; he had no time for comparison.
We have no time to compare with anyone and anything when we have something bigger in God.
Most people go through life without purpose.
Once you discover your purpose you will apply it everywhere.
A little bit of wisdom #2:
“Contentment fills me with life and fortifies me from circumstance.”
This is available for all of us today.
This sermon was preached by Pastor Elio Marrocco on June 2, 2019 at New Life Christian Church