Learning—that’s the operative word here. We’re not born content. I just love the way the Lord tells us not only what to do but how to do it! He gives us the knowledge in His Word and then empowers us to carry it out as we do our part.
In these next 3 blogs, I will discuss the practical side of being content. We’ve touched on many of the key truths already, but having an itemized list is always helpful. Here’s the most important key:
Seek God First/Obey The Greatest Commandment
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Mat 6:33)
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. (Mk 12:30)
God has to be first! Otherwise, we are worshipping other gods—the god of money, self-actualization, accomplishment…. A contented life is available, but having it is conditional upon our obedience to God.
“So if you faithfully obey the commands I am giving you today—to love the Lord your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul—then I will send rain on your land in its season…. You will eat and be satisfied.” (Deut 11:13-15)
May I tell you, surrendering to God isn’t a killjoy! His commands are not burdensome (1Jn 5:3). When you know the real God—His true character—He is a delight to obey. Ten times in Psalm 119 alone, the author speaks of the joy in obeying God.
I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. (v 14)*
I’m not denying that sometimes it is difficult. However, if you focus on the goodness and love of God it will be easier to obey.
“It is easy to obey God when the heart is right,” says Barnes.
“The Christian, whose will is united with the will of God, will not find obedience to that will a task.” (Pulpit Commentary)
If we find God’s commands onerous it’s simply because we have not surrendered. Our wills are not in line with God’s will. There’s a war. The more we surrender our fleshly desires the more we will want, even love, to obey His commands, and…
The more we will see obedience to our wonderful God as the best way to live!
I have discovered that the more important God becomes to me, and the less important I become, the more content I am. As John the Baptist said, “He must become greater; I must become less” (Jn 3:30).
As you pursue living in submission, of putting God first in all things, He will communicate to you that He is pleased. That feeling of knowing you have put a smile on your Redeemer’s face is worth it all!
Make the effort to obey. You won’t regret it—guaranteed!
I promise not to be as long-winded in describing the rest of “The How” principles, but we have to put first things first. If you work toward this one, the rest will fall into place. He promises!
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. (Mat 5:6)
*See also Ps 119:16, 24, 35, 47, 70, 92, 143, 174.
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