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Learning Contentment

An image that often comes to mind of being not content is a fish opening and closing its mouth. If you’ve been to the Ripley’s Aquarium you see the mouth of the fish open and close all the time.


I know this is a fish thing, but this is an apt illustration of discontentment – the heart within always desiring more, better, and never being satisfied.  


We live in an age of super-discontentment. We live in one of the wealthiest nations (at least it was), and yet we are a nation of discontents.  Discontentment, as someone has called it “is life’s burglar.”  It robs one of satisfaction. It’s a robber of life. It’s motto: ‘I don’t have. But I need’ -- the latest brand-name or update.  ‘I need this; I need that … all the time.


We throw away the good to get better. We are a ‘throw away’ society.  The ‘waste’ or ‘garbage heaps’ are a testament to the vice of discontentment. It is fuelled by its miserly parents, Envy and Greed.  It shows in jealousy, envy, anger and strife.  Never satisfied.


The problem is the human heart. It is sinful by nature. We are born that way. In our first parents, we forfeited life with God. And, ever since, the problem is that we ourselves want to be gods.  Yet we are never satisfied.  Why is that? Because God created us in such a way that our satisfaction is only in Him. One ancient author has rightly said, “our hearts are restless until they find our rest in You.”


We said a moment ago that discontentment is the robber of life. So where do we find the grace of contentment? In Christ Jesus who died to save sinners and give new life.  He is God’s gift to the world and for all who believe on Him, there is the joy of forgiveness, peace, life now and life after death, so rich and full.


He is the great gain. He is everlasting gain.   He gives a new perspective to our living on earth. Everything is temporary on earth – our new home, new car, the latest in fashions. These ‘gains’ in life are nice, but they never truly satisfy our deepest longings because God has created eternity in our hearts.


We carry ‘nothing in’ and ‘nothing out.’  If we have Christ, then, we have great and eternal gain. He truly satisfies.  We then learn and grow in contentment.   Gone is the robber of life!




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