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What's the Secret

Monday, June 28, 2010

Category: Attitudes, Character, Problems, Your Walk With God

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 4:11-13

I was in a store recently when the checkout lady asked me, “Have you got your lottery ticket yet? The jackpot is $33 million!” So I said, “I don’t need $33 million” and she looked at me kind of funny. I explained, “It wouldn’t make me any happier.” The girl beside her said, “It’d make me happier,” to which I added, “or more miserable.”

Our dialogue reminded me of how many people live in a perpetual state of hunger for more. “If I could just get more. ” I wonder how many people are going to have to drive over the money-doesn’t-make-you-happy cliff before they figure out this truth.

Contentment is where the real satisfaction comes from.

Content in what I have. Psalm 62:10 says, “If riches increase, set not your heart on them.” Happiness is not in the having, it’s in the acceptance of what God has given you.

Content in whom I’m with. “I wish my wife was a little more . . .” “If my husband would just change . . .” Sure, you can focus on your spouse’s shortcomings and stay miserable if you want, or you can choose to concentrate on the good. Read Philippians 4:8 to discover the joy.

Content in whose you are. Listen to this promise in Hebrews 13:5: “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.’”

You may say, “I can do a couple of those, James, but I don’t think I can ever be content in all those areas, all the time.”

Do you want to know how you can be content? Before he closes his letter to the Philippians, the apostle Paul lets us in on a huge secret. “I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need, [here’s the secret] I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:12-13). Through Christ! That’s the Christian life—it’s Jesus living His life through me. 

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