The Bible teaches that ‘godliness with contentment is great gain’. Why is contentment so elusive? We seem to be always chasing something. So often I see myself looking at greener pastures somewhere else. Why is it so difficult to be happy and satisfied with all that God has already given us? When I was young my father instilled in me a competitive nature. I worked hard at being the best sportsman I could be. I went into an athletics race to always be first across the finishing line. There is nothing wrong with this but sometimes winning meant everything to me. The joy of the competition and the athleticism was lost. And as I grew a little older I always wanted more whether it was the latest car or gadget or promotion to the top of the ladder! Contentment for me was very difficult for me to find!
I must confess to you that God has been challenging me over recent weeks as to what is important to Him. I have known the two greatest commandments since coming to know Jesus so long ago. However, I think that I have been very slow in actually living out God’s desire to love Him with all my heart, soul, mind and strength. And perhaps I have loved my neighbour as myself only when it has been convenient to me. As for the great commission … well … yes … but only when I have the time! As I think through this, I am starting to realize that genuine contentment can only come when I truly live out these commandments. Then I am in God’s will and joy and contentment seem to follow!
Our text from 1 Timothy today is a good one. It is not backward in coming forward in its teaching. It challenges us with the thought that the love of fortune and fame is not the way to find contentment. Contentment is found when we walk in keeping with God’s will for our lives. His will is found in these two great commandments and commission. All other teaching from God’s word flows from these! Godliness has much to do with our Heavenly Father’s heart. He has such a loving and gracious heart and as we evidence this love in our own lives the desire for more and more of what the world offers seems to find balance and dissipates. Contentment finally comes and we experience this overwhelming peace and joy in our inner being. Walking with the Lord each day, committed to Him, trusting Him in all circumstances is where we find safety, security acceptance and contentment. May we spur each other on in experiencing this contentment every day!