We Need To Be Content Wherever We Are!!

Wednesday Proverbs 3 5

Have A Wonderful and Blessed day!!! Come To Contentment!!!

Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
Philippians 4:5 Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Philippians 4:9 Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
Philippians 4:10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.
Philippians 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.
Philippians4:12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

It’s a tragedy that the lack of contentment today has become the norm for even the children of God, yet contentment is absolutely essential to walk worthily of our Lord.
1. Rejoice Greatly in Your Heavenly Maker.
Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
(An Act of Worship)
2. Respond in Gentleness & Hardiness to Men.
Philippians 4:5 Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
3. Request with Gratitude and Humility in Every Manner.
Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
(The Antidote to Worry)

4. Rest in the Guardian of Your Heart and Mind.
Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

It seems that our country today is never satisfied. Us as people are never satisfied (not is all cases but too many are like this). We desire and crave for more and more, yet we are never fulfilled. “We are never satisfied, never content, and envious of those who have what we have not attained.

The tragedy, though, is this lack of contentment has become the norm for even the children of God.
Lets look in God’s Word to see how we, as God’s people, can “Pursue Contentment” in our individual lives. But understand, this is not an option for the Christian; it is absolutely essential in order to walk worthily for our Lord.

In the midst of this world, with all its temptations and attractions, how can the Follower of Christ, not only overcome the lure of the world, but be victorious, through contentment, to be the men, the women, and the young people that God desires us to be?

I have four actions that we, as God’s children, should learn to develope in our daily walk in order to develop contentment so that we can experience the abundant life in Christ as we bring glory to God.
Keep in mind one very important fact. If we as saved, children of God, the Lord of lords and King of kings it has to truly grieve our Precious lord when we are in a state of discontent and envy in front of the lost and just at home in privacy. He knows our thoughts.

#1: Rejoice Greatly in Your Heavenly Maker.

Paul tells us to rejoice always in the Lord. This is an “Act of Worship.”
Prisons in Paul’s day were obviously a lot different than what we have today. Most jails in the first century had no windows, no ventilation, and no lighting. Prisoners were beaten and then locked in chains. If fed, they received half the amount given to a slave. Hygiene was non-existent; the stench of excrement, urine, and body odors was horrible. Lice were abundant. Many prisoners suffocated due to a lack of air. A common cold was often times lethal because the immune systems in their bodies were so weak. Added to the physical turmoil was the psychological suffering. The prisons back then didn’t not in any way cater to the prisoners and protect the prisoners right. THEY HAD NONE!!

It was in this type environment that we find the Apostle Paul in a Roman prison writing about contentment. And he begins by encouraging the reader to, “Rejoice.”

You can’t rejoice in something that you do not have. You can’t rejoice in the Lord unless the Lord rejoices in you.
Luke 15:10 Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.
Also, it is alluded to that the Lord one day will rejoice with the child of God, “Well done, good and faithful servant…enter into the joy of your Lord;

Matthew 25:21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
Matthew 25:22 He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them.
Matthew 25:23 His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.

What are you going to rejoice in if you’re lost spiritually? That you’re going to an eternal hell? True joy is knowing that the wrath of God has been settled and the grace of God has been secured. And if us as born again children of God are not thankful, and content in our life why would a lost person enjoying his daily sin and content therein want to come to Jesus if we appear miserable, and complaining about what we don’t have.

Paul reminds the church here at Philippi a number of times in his letter about “joy” or “rejoicing.” The joy came from knowing that “He who began a good work in [them] [would] perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. (Philippians 1:6).”
Jesus even told the seventy disciples to not rejoice that evil spirits were subject to them, but rather “rejoice because your names are written in heaven.
Luke 10:20 Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.
You want contentment? Rejoice because you’re saved!

#2: Respond in Gentleness and Hardiness to Men.
Paul writes that our gentleness should be shown. He also reminds us that “the Lord is at hand.” This is “Action in Our Walk”
As children of God, there ought to be a gentle spirit about us toward everyone. Our lives should be of a genuine Christ-likeness shown both in our words and through our actions. And I will say, even unto those family members who get under our skin. Remember if we love just the lovable we are no different than the lost. Yet it is sad that too many families are forced to experience a hypocrisy from the life of a family member that their local church never sees. He may talk about heaven at church, but he’s (OR SHE) got a far from Christ attitude at home!!!
When we’re saved, the Holy Spirit of God comes and resides in us. As we are filled with the Spirit, our lives take on the fruit of the Spirit described in Galatians 5:22, which includes gentleness. So, having developed the “mind of Christ” in us;

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Our response to life should be with gentleness that is demonstrated with a hardiness. Notice that Paul says in this verse, “The Lord is at hand.” This implies a proactive stance in our gentleness to others; a “hardiness.” Being merely reactive in our calling does not imitate Christ. The Lord is at hand! There’s an urgency! We must look for ways to show Christ to people we meet. The world needs to encounter the Gospel being being given to all we come in contact with. There needs to be a clarity of Whose we are.

The “fragrance” of Christ should permeate wherever we go, directing people to the Saviour. Contentment is a by-product of having a hardy gentle spirit.

#3: Request with Gratitude and Humility in Every Manner.
Paul writes for the Christian to be careful for nothing, but with thanksgiving let God know of needs. This is the “Antidote to Worry.”
Notice first that Paul speaks of what (or what not) to do.
Peter writes a similar statement in 1 Peter 5:7,
“Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you”.

Cast your discouragement, weariness, hopelessness, disappointment, frustration, depression, despair, pain, hurt, suffering, grief, heartache, affliction, trouble, and anxiety. We must remember that this is not a suggestion, it’s a commandment, because God knows how easily prone we are to worry.

But what does happen is the worry. And worry robs a person of their joy.
Now, that is what to do; Paul then tells us how to do.
Paul says we are to have a Prayerful Spirit. In everything, pray. Godly prayer only comes, however, through a humbled heart. “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.”

Proverbs 16:18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
Proverbs 16:19 Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.
Proverbs 6 lets us know that pride is an “abomination” to the Lord.
Proverbs 6:16 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
Proverbs 6:17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
Proverbs 6:18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
Proverbs 6:19 A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

Prayer is the essential for the child of God.

Secondly, we are to have a Thankful Spirit: “…with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” We are very much ungrateful so much of our lives. When was the last time that we truly meditated on the tremendous blessings that God has favored us with? We even complain with our mouths full! We complain while driving by a hospital or nursing home! We complain while watching our healthy children or grandchildren! We even complain while coming to church to worship our Lord. But mostly we complain while on our way to heaven instead of hell for which we deserve.

We need to stop looking at what others have and count our MANY blessings. Sometimes we need to look at the suffering of others and pray for them and then thank the Lord we are not hurting as they are.
Show me an unthankful person, and I’ll show you a bitter person.
Negativity is also a child of ingratitude, which is highly contagious. For example, you listen to a sermon that is convicting, yet encouraging. It “fires you up for the Lord!” And you think to yourself, “That was such a great sermon! I really needed that Word from the Lord today. It truly blessed my heart.” Then when you walk out the doors of the church, you hear someone saying, “I really didn’t get much out of that sermon. It was kind of shallow and actually boring. I’ve heard a lot better.” Then by the time you get to your car, you’re thinking, “Well maybe that wasn’t as good a sermon as I’d thought”. Do we let others with a bad attitude and unthankful spirit influence us?

Having a heart of genuine gratitude is serious business to our Lord. In Luke chapter 17, Jesus recognized only the thankful healed Samaritan leper as having a saving faith. Staying thankful is also a powerful deterrent to sin. It’s hard to deliberately sin when your heart is overwhelmed by the goodness of God on your life. In addition, thankfulness is a means which God uses to bring about spiritual growth in His children.

Prayerful and Thankful Spirits are the prerequisites for a Contented Spirit.
#4: Rest in the Guardian of Your Heart and Mind.

Paul writes that the peace of God will guard the believer’s being. This is the “Abiding in God’s abundant blessings he bestows on us.”
The peace of God is our rest in God. Christian life is not to eliminate every unpleasant circumstance; it is to trust in the good purpose of our infinite, holy, sovereign, powerful God in every difficulty. Those who honor Him by trusting Him will experience the blessings of His perfect peace that he tells us we can attain.

That peace of God is one of the secrets to contentment. I found the following story.

There was a woman on the island of Tobago that experienced this peace that passes all understanding:

“A short-term missionary, on his final day, was leading
worship in a leper colony. He asked if anyone had a favorite
song. When he did, a woman turned around, and he saw the
most disfigured face he’d ever seen. She had no ears and no
nose. Her lips were gone. When she raised her hand, he saw
that she had no fingers. But she asked him, “Could we sing
‘Count Your Many Blessings, Name Them One by One?’”
The missionary started the song but he couldn’t finish. Someone
later commented, “I suppose you’ll never be able to sing the
song again.” He answered, “No, I’ll sing it again, just never
the same way”

When a follower of Christ can truly grasp the enormity of God’s provision for His children, it’s then that he or she can truly rest and abide in the wonderment of God. And that’s called contentment.
Ultimately, contentment is a blessing from God that we receive as a result of our faithfulness to Him. It frees us from the world’s grip and entanglement so that our spiritual eyes can be opened to the goodness of God.

Contentment births a teachable spirit in our soul that gives us the freedom to follow at any cost. Paul confessed in verse 11 that he had;
Philippians 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

Paul also stated, “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me (verse 13).”
Contentment is a vehicle that God uses to prepare His children for the work that He has prepared for them. When we are faithful in our contentment before the Lord, we will be fruitful in our commitment to the Lord.

“Our tendency is to look for things that will make us content, rather than putting forth the effort it takes to learn how to be content,” such as the actions that Paul gives us in this passage:

1) Rejoice because you’re saved.
2) Respond with a life of consistent graciousness.
3) Request from God with grateful, humble heart.
4) Experience a Rest in the Lord that gives a peace that cannot be understood.
5.) Consider the many blessings we have instead of bitterness over what we don’t have.

REMEMBER WHERE WE STARTED NOBODY DESERVES THE MANY BLESSINGS WE HAVE, AND WE ALL DESERVE HELL, AND WE NEED TO BE SO THANKFUL THAT OUR PRECIOUS LORD PERFECT AND RIGHTEOUS IN EVERY WAY, CAME HERE TO THIS SINFUL WORLD SUFFERED, DIED SPILLED HIS PRECIOUS BLOOD SO WE COULD HAVE A HOME IN HEAVEN AND STAY OUT OF HELL.
HE ROSE AGAIN AND IS WAITING TO COME TAKE US HOME.

COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS
When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God has done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
*Count your many blessings, see what God has done.

[*And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.]
Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God has done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
*Count your many blessings, see what God has done.
[*And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.]
When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings—

Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.
So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God has done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
*Count your many blessings, see what God has done.
[*And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.]

Love and Prayers
Cheryl

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