Philippians 4:12-13, "I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through Him who gives me strength."
Psalm 46:10, "Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth."
We all want to be happy, with a smile on our face and an extra spring in our step. Who says, "I'm mad because I've been so happy lately," or, "I can't wait to feel sad again"? Herein lies the point: In the end, happiness isn't a constant, and it always overpromises and under delivers; it's temporary and contingent on circumstances. God offers us something far more significant - eternal joy and contentment, even in the worse moments.
In today's passage, Paul says contentment isn't automatic but learned. When a difficult moment arises, our gut reaction - even as Christians - may not be immediately flooded with joy. But as we seek comfort in Christ, He ushers peace and contentment into our hearts. We may not be happy about our current circumstances, but knowing that God is in control, eases our minds.
Contentment isn't learned in a day or accomplished through willpower and determination. It's only possible through having a personal relationship with Jesus. The more we grow to know and trust Him, the more we learn to feel contentment amid our circumstances, regardless of whether we're mad, glad, happy, or sad. The world around us can be pressing in on all sides, and we can still have peace in our hearts, knowing our Savior is at our side, ready to guide us through the lowest valleys and darkest days. Now, if that doesn't bring a smile to your lips, nothing will!
Google the hymn, "It is Well with My Soul." Then, take a moment to be still before your great God as you read or listen to the lyrics, and allow God to flood your heart with His overwhelming peace and love. Then give thanks for the promise of His presence.
Dear God, Quiet the noisy thoughts that are trying to infiltrate my heart and pull me close. Thank You for sharing this moment with me today. In Jesus' name, Amen.