Philippians 4:10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.
11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.
12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.
13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
Contentment is a learned virtue, not one with which man is born. If it were natural and easily accepted, every man would be content. Instead, it requires much effort and sacrifice on the individual’s part. The apostle Paul learned how to be content by not allowing his circumstances to control or adversely influence him. If he found himself abased (brought low) or if he abounded (overflowed), he knew how to remain contented. He considered both situations to be completely within the will of God. He believed that his circumstances were not to determine his satisfaction levels. So it should be with Christians today. Whether a Christian abounds in wealth or wants in poverty, he should rejoice for God’s provision. This will only result from a supreme love for God.
- (For children): Think of five of your favorite toys. What if you only had two of those? God wants you to be happy with many or with few.
- (For everyone): Are you living with plenty or do you find yourself in need? Can you pinpoint where your current condition reflects the will of God? Are you content or discontent with your current situation?
- Are you striving to learn to be more content? What are some of the steps that you think could help you to learn to be more content with the things you have? From reading Isaiah 29:24, do you see where complaining hinders your spiritual development?
- Ask God to help you to become more grateful for His provisions.
- Ask the Lord to help you learn the truth of Philippians 4:13. Ask Him to reveal the depth of how this verse applies to contentment. Are you willing to be content because He strengthens you?
SONG: Take My Life, and Let It Be