By Pastor Vince Carrig
New Life Fellowship Church, Grant
Leaning on his fence one day, a devout Amish man watched a new neighbor move in next door. After all kinds of modern appliances, electronic gadgets, plush furniture, and costly wall hangings paraded in, the onlooker called over, “If you find you’re lacking anything, neighbor, let me know and I’ll show you how to live without it.”
Sometimes we have a hard time distinguishing what we need from what we want.
Scripture says that “(But) godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment. For we have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it either. If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content,” (Paul’s First letter to Timothy, 6:6-8).
Surrounded by so many devices and experiences that promise to make our life fulfilling, the temptation to want more and more after that knocks at our door.
Thankfulness dials that down. Thank the Lord for all of the things with which He has blessed you. As mentioned, we have food and covering. We have the ability to worship Jesus without fear (to this point) of a government trying to stop us. We live in a stable country that has a peaceful transfer of power. Vast resources surround us, both above ground and in it.
Some extra money or a well-overdue promotion might raise our standard of living, but it also might raise our expectations. High expectations can elevate our discontent and disappointment.
Would I like another room in my house, or to build a deck? Sure. Would I like a new(er) vehicle or a recreational machine? I wouldn’t turn one down. Would it feel cool to have the newest electronic device, or several gadgets to make my life easier and “save me time?” Of course. No health ailments? Sounds wonderful.
All of these will bring me temporary happiness (until they need repair, ha!), but not contentment. Seek contentment with thankfulness, and you will have something worth having.