-- In His Strength: Pondering Contentment II www.superfluousbanter.org

In His Strength

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength --- Philippians 4:13

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Pondering Contentment II

In the midst of writing the post "Pondering Contentment", I started to think about the meaning of contentment, what the dictionary said versus what the Bible said. Since I was too lazy to wheel across my bedroom to my bookshelf, I looked at dictionary.com

Desiring no more than what one has; satisfied.
A source of satisfaction
happiness with one's situation in life

I was surprised to see scripture later in the page accompanying more definitions in the online dictionary ( I looked these scriptures up too)

a state of mind in which one's desires are confined to his lot whatever it maybe(1 Tim. 6:6&8; 2 Cor. 9:8).
It is opposed to envy (James 3:16),
ambition (Prov. 13:10),
anxiety (Matt. 6:25, 34), and repining(1 Cor.10:10).
It arises from the inward disposition, and is the offspring of humility, and of an intelligent consideration of the rectitude and benignity of divine providence (Ps. 96:1, 2; 145),
the greatness of thedivine promises (2Pet. 1:4),
and our own unworthiness (Gen. 32:10);
as well as from the view the gospel opens up to us of rest and peace hereafter (Rom.5:2). Phil 4:4, 11 -13

It taught me a lot about our needs versus our desires. God may not always meet my wants, but He will always meet my needs. Lately I have been praying about what God would desire me to have. I read somewhere to throw away my list of desired traits in a man and to trust God in giving me exactly what I need. Self-seeking attitudes only lead to confusion.

A Quote from Elizabeth Elliot's Passion & Purity
A good and perfect gift these natural desires, but so much the more necessary that they be restrained, controlled, corrected, even crucified that they might be reborn in power and purity for God.

A statement from Ron Hutchcraft ministries says “We're lonely for God. Because of our sin we're away from the one who alone can fill the spiritual hole in our heart. That's why no earth relationship has ever been enough.” I find that on the days I neglect to get into His Word, I feel a loneliness creeping up inside me.

Speaking of relationship ever being enough, that is one of my fears is that when I do finally marry, will I still have this intense desire for something greater.

I am learning that being content is a choice we make, we can pray for God to help us choose contentment, but the ultimate decision to be content is ours. For so long I was afraid to be content. I had feelings that if I was content, I would never be with someone. I once prayed for these desires to be taken away, if they were indeed of the flesh and not from God. They only grew in intensity. Which grew confusing until I heard that God had given these feelings to me and I needed to give them back to Him to see what He would do with them. (Lord, use them for Your glory!)

If being satisfied is what God wants, then my prayer is for contentment. After all, it may only be for a time. But what if it is for eternity? I pray the Lord's coming be soon! But for now, I will go on living as though God were my husband.

Can I be content? Philippians 4:13 says I can



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