This is the perfect pad to organize my to-do list. So I put one in the shopping basket. Let’s ignore the fact that I have numerous other pads at home that would work. Someone told me this was the best pad to organize your to-do list. I wanted it; I was not content. Maybe this was a better way. Guess what, now I have a basket full of pads of paper to declutter. We will save that for another time and a post. Let’s pause and think about how contentment as a discipline for successful growth.
Contentment, will that really help me succeed? I thought that it was discontentment that moved me to set the goal and now you are saying that contentment is going to help me be successful. Are those the thoughts running through your mind? They are running through mine. Stay with me and let’s work through this and see how contentment can be a discipline for success.
Discontentment is one of the things that can hinder you from reaching your goals. To overcome this hindrance we need contentment.
Know the Disciplines for Successful Growth
We want to grow and that means knowing the disciplines that will help us grow. Humility is one of the foundational disciplines. Contentment will help us be focused.
What is contentment?
In his book The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment, Puritan author, Jeremiah Burroughs defines it, “Christian contentment is that sweet, inward, quiet, gracious frame of spirit, which freely submits to and delights in God’s wise and fatherly disposal in every condition.”
Contentment comes from within. It is the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. It comes by fixing our eyes on Christ and seeing all that Christ has done for us.
Contentment is quiet. It is seen through the actions of a person and not from their words. The person that quietly goes through life enjoying all they have and seeing it as blessings from God.
Contented people understand that what they have comes from God. So they are willing to give graciously to those around them. They understand that God will meet their needs.
Contentment submits to a loving father who is caring for us. When we realize that we have a perfect heavenly father who is caring for us, contentment and praise should flow from our lives.
“That to be well skilled in the mystery of Christian contentment is the duty, glory, and excellence of a Christian.” Jeremiah Burroughs
You can learn to be content.
That is what Paul writes in Philippians 4:11, “Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content” How do you learn this?
Paul is striving to know God. Philippians 3:7-11 Paul writes that “I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord” (verse 8), Then in verse 10 he writes “that I may know him and the power of his resurrection . . .” When we strive to know God, the things around us will mean little to us. We will grow in contentment as we realize how God loves us.
Paul is striving toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. He is fixing his eyes on eternity. When we do that the things of this world will lose their appeal. We have a confidence that God will work with all that we have.
How does this help achieve our goals?
We will be satisfied with what God has given us. Instead of complaining about what we don’t have and how that is hindering us we will be thankful and work with what we have.
We know that God has placed us in the circumstances that he wants. We will stop comparing our situations and circumstances with those around. Understand that God has sovereignly arranged the details of our life. So glorify him.
Maybe you were discontented with the way things were and so you decided to make a change. Is that discontentment in something you have control over and can change? If so use that to make a goal but if the discontentment is in the circumstances that God has placed in your life. Learn to be content.
Do you struggle with discontentment? Discipline yourself to be content. Learn to give thanks for what you have. Learn to use what you have instead of buying more. Guard your thoughts against complaining but dwell on God’s goodness.
Know the disciplines for successful growth. These disciplines will help you know God and grow in what he has called you to do.