How to seek (and achieve) contentment
It's no secret that contentment is one of the most sought-after emotions in life. Most of us are constantly searching for it (or should be), but few ever find it. Why is that? Is contentment really so hard to come by? For me, it sometimes seems like it is.
The Bible has a lot to say about finding contentment in each season of life. In Philippians, Paul writes, "Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content" (read the whole verse below).
It's not about our circumstances; it's about our attitude. And that's something we can control.
What are your thoughts on contentment? Do you feel content right now?
Personally, I want to be more content in my life. I want my business to keep growing, but not at the expense of precious time with my family. I want my relationships and social life to flourish, but not at the expense of my quiet time. I want my kids to grow up to be healthy men, but not at the expense of experiencing the fun of being a boy and slamming a cheeseburger and fries after an awesome baseball game.
So how do we find contentment? Here are a few things I've learned through studying contentment:
- First, contentment is not the same as happiness. Happiness depends on our circumstances but contentment does not.
- Second, contentment is not about getting what we want. It's about being thankful for what we have.
- Third, contentment doesn't mean that we never have any desires or goals. It means that we're content even if those things don't happen and especially if they don't happen on our timeline (the hardest one for me).
Contentment is a choice. It's an attitude that we can choose to have, no matter what our circumstances are. The next time you find yourself wanting more than you have, remember these things and choose contentment instead. With God's help, I know we can learn to be content in every season of life because His word is truth.
Here are a few bible verses I like to turn to when praying for contentment:
Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.- Psalm 37:3-4
Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” - Hebrews 13:5
Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. - Philippians 4:11-12
Do you have any favorite verses on contentment?
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