Aug 31, 2012
Recently my wife and I spoke with a young woman who was struggling to be content.
She has strong faith. She loves the Lord Jesus.
But she longs to be married. And so sometimes she feels deeply discontent.
And she wondered what she could do to find more contentment.
She’s not alone
We all struggle with contentment. Maybe it’s not about getting married.
But we might feel discontentment over our —
- lives in general
But there’s good news
Here’s what Paul said about contentment —
I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. (Phil 4:11-12)
So no matter what our circumstances — it’s always possible to be content.
That might sound impossible. And I’m certainly not saying I never feel discontentment.
But Paul is clear — it’s possible to never feel discontentment.
How is that possible?
It’s because God promises to completely satisfy our hearts in Jesus Christ.
Look at these Scriptures —
Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.'” Now this He said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive. John 7:37-38
Is your heart thirsty for marriage? A better job? A nicer car? Jesus promises that if you will come to Him and drink, He will pour His Spirit upon you so powerfully that all your heart-thirsts — including your thirst for marriage, a better job, or a nicer car — will be completely satisfied.
Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. Psalm 90:14
Moses wrote this psalm. So what satisfied Moses’ heart? God’s steadfast love. When Moses understood, saw, sensed, and felt God’s steadfast love, he was so satisfied — so content — that he rejoiced and was glad.
Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. Psalm 73:25
Asaph (who wrote this psalm) had times when God so filled his heart that he desired nothing else. Nothing. That’s contentment.
Not will-power — but heart-experience
Please don’t misunderstand.
It’s not that we grit our teeth and cling to the truth that God is all-satisfying — even though we feel empty.
It’s that we can have times when we feel and experience God completely satisfying our hearts in Himself.
This does not mean we stop desiring marriage — or a better job.
But it means that in the meantime we are fully content and satisfied in God.
How can we experience this?
In John 7:37-38 (quoted above) Jesus promises to pour His Spirit upon us so powerfully that our heart-thirsts are completely satisfied in Him.
And He tells us how we can experience this — by coming to Him and drinking. Which is another way of saying — by believing in Him.
So how do we do that? Here are steps I’ve found helpful —
- Turn to Jesus just as you are — trusting Him to give you everything you need.
- Confess your discontentment — that you’ve been trusting something besides Him to satisfy your heart.
- Receive the assurance of His complete forgiveness based on His death and resurrection.
- Ask Him to pour upon you the work of His Spirit — to help you see and feel and experience Him as your all-satisfying Treasure.
- Set your heart upon the truth of who God is and what God has done — thinking and pondering and meditating on specific Scriptures.
- Pray over those Scriptures until — by the work of the Spirit — you taste and feel God’s all-satisfying presence.
This is what Jesus means when He says “come to me and drink.”
And He promises that when you do — your thirsty soul will be filled and overflowing with rivers of living water.
You will be completely content — in Him.
That’s how to be content.
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And here’s some related posts you might find helpful —
What The Grand Canyon Tells Us About Finding Joy
- 6 Reasons Heart-Satisfaction Is Crucial
Worship Christ as Your Treasure (4-Min Video "Knowing You")
(Picture from everystockphoto by Mrinkk.)