It is so easy to be discontent, isn’t it? In this day and age, there is so much available that we could always have more, newer, bigger, better. Our sinful nature wars against our new creation in Christ when we compare ourselves to others both in material possessions and in life circumstances. That person is thinner, happier, has a spouse or family…whatever the case, I think it’s safe to say that the temptation to be discontent is there every day.
We know we are to be content, and that the Bible tells us a lot about contentment. But how do we fight that fight and have victory over our tendency toward discontentment? The Bible holds wonderful truths and promises that we can dwell on as we seek to renew our minds when discontentment comes knocking, and we will be looking into just a few of those in our next couple of blogs.
One passage that addresses this topic beautifully comes from Psalm 84. Let’s check out a few sections of this passage, and see how these rich truths impact our fight against discontentment:
How lovely are Your dwelling places, O Lord of hosts! My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of the Lord; My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand outside. I would rather stand at the threshold of the house of my God Than dwell in the tents of wickedness. For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly. O Lord of hosts, How blessed is the man who trusts in You! – Psalm 84:1-2, 10-12
This popular Psalm starts out with the writer proclaiming his deep passion for the Lord. Notice the emotional language used here: “My soul longed” and “yearned.” “My heart and my flesh sing.” It is clear that the psalmist is truly in love with his God.
This is one of the most important things to consider in the fight against discontentment: am I truly seeing that the Lord is better than anything else? Think about it. Our God is the Creator of the entire universe. He didn’t have to do that. He loves us enough to want a relationship with us. He doesn’t have to do that. He wanted a relationship with us so badly that He was willing to sacrifice His own Son, Jesus, to provide a way for us to know Him personally. He definitely didn’t have to do that.
And not only that, but think about Who God is and His characteristics. He is faithful, even when we aren’t. He loves perfectly without selfish motives, even when we cannot master that kind of love in our own lives. He is completely trustworthy to never leave us. He is always and completely good and does what is absolutely best for our good and His glory, all the time. Who wouldn’t long for a God like that?
It’s easy to forget just how amazing God is, isn’t it? When we take our eyes off of Him and fail to remember the truths about the God we serve, we tend to start believing the lie that other things, people, or situations are better. We think He is not enough for our peace. We think He won’t provide joy, hope, and satisfaction. But sin is deceiving, and our hearts are so easily deceived (Jer. 17:9). The truth that we must choose to believe and live by is this: God is the only source of perfect and lasting joy, peace, and satisfaction. In His presence is fullness of joy. Following and worshipping Him only truly is better than anything else we could ever obtain.
So, no matter our feelings about a situation, we can remember the truth that God is better. When you are struggling with discontentment, set some time aside to search the scriptures and be reminded of the characteristics of the God we serve. Remember and believe truth: He is better.
Keep checking in for more discussions on the topic of contentment!