The Liberating Power of Contentment!

By Christine Darg    
     I’ve passed this “Contentment Lane” many times off of Lee Highway near Staunton, Virginia, and I’ve rejoiced at the wonderful name for a residential street.
     Finally one day I decided to take a photo, and I’m so glad I did, because it perfectly illustrates the “Streams in the Desert” devotional for today, 7 January [edited]:
“I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” (Philippians 4:11)
     Paul wrote those words in his dungeon! Think about that!
     A story is told of a king who went into his garden one morning and found everything withered and dying. He asked the oak that stood near the gate what the trouble was. It was sick of life because it was not tall and beautiful like another species of tree. The pine lamented that it could not bear grapes. The vine wanted to die because it could not stand erect and produce fruit as fine as the peach tree. The geranium fretted because it was not tall and fragrant like the lilac.
“Others may do a greater work,
But you have your part to do;
And no one in all God’s heritage
Can do it so well as you.”
     Those who belong to God are content because they will only what He wills; thy desire to do for Him whatever He desires them to do; they strip themselves of everything, and in this nakedness find all things restored 100-fold.
     I’ve been thinking a lot about contentment being a genuine aim in 2022 despite all the wickedness in society’s demise, the covid bureaucracy and so forth. It’s shocking that as I studied commentaries on Philippians 4: 11, one preacher wrote that “I never saw more than a dozen persons in my life with the sweet peace of a contented spirit.” 
   Contentment in one’s spirit is a frame of mind that is highly pleasing to God.  It’s also greatly advantageous! A contented spirit is filled with relaxation and liberty, whereas discontent attracts sin.
     Discontentment deprives us of happiness and exposes us to judgments (Psalm 106:24-271 Corinthians 10:10).

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