“I am not telling you this because I need anything. I have learned to be satisfied with the things I have and with everything that happens. I know how to live when I am poor, and I know how to live when I have plenty. I have learned the secret of being happy at any time in everything that happens, when I have enough to eat and when I go hungry, when I have more than I need and when I do not have enough. I can do all things through Christ, because he gives me strength.” - Philippians 4:11-13
Being content is hard to do. Have you ever struggled with being happy in hard times? How about being happy with your job? What about being content with your family? We struggle with contentment because we are sinful people. We struggle with it until God teaches us to be content in our circumstances. Experiencing contentment in our life is a lifetime process, and we are not alone in our struggles. God provides us good examples to follow in Scripture of others who found contentment in whatever happened to them.
In Philippians 4:11-13, Paul learned to be content with his financial condition. He knew that contentment is better than any riches. He also found contentment in his pain and suffering. He knew God allowed him to go through trials with the plan to develop his character so he would not become too proud, and to keep him humble (2 Corinthians 12:7-10, Romans 5:3-4).
Jesus became content with suffering on the cross after praying to God in Matthew 26:39, “My Father, if it is possible, do not give me this cup of suffering. But do what you want, not what I want.” Jesus prayed this prayer two times for God to take the pain away He was about to endure. God did not answer Him, and He found contentment when God gave Him the strength to endure what He was about to experience with the power given to Him by an angel (Luke 22:43). We cannot be content and have peace by our own power; it is a supernatural power that is given to us by God.
Prayer of the day:
Dear heavenly Father,
Help us to be content in all circumstances. We need Your help because it is hard to do. Thank you for giving us examples to follow in the Bible. The apostle Paul and Jesus had the power from You to be content in every circumstance. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!