In this busy, fast paced world we all long for a moment’s peace, a time to not think but just relax allowing the cares of the world to take their proper place at the bottom of our list. Over the years we find it has become harder and harder to do, is there simply no respite (temporary intermission). As the clock winds, each day down we wonder just where our time is going and what is our answer. Life does seem to be more complicated than the days when a shepherd would sit under a tree and simply watch over his cattle or sheep to keep danger away. Are we up to a more difficult challenge?
That really is a good question because most of us think our elected officials or those in command in our local community will see to it, one way or another, but is that the kind of contentment we desire – simply no one rocking the little boat we are spending our time in. So many of us neglect to spend time in our Bibles and yet that is where we will find all the answers to the life we desire. Solomon was a very wise king and is said to have written three thousand of the verses found in the book of Proverbs; one of which tells us that The fear of the Lord leads to life, and he who has it will abide in satisfaction; he will not be visited with evil (19:23). Wisdom is often said to be simple and I wonder why we often refuse to accept the simple things in life. Could it be the devil who keeps telling us that something so simple can’t really have any value?
We all know because we have experienced it that there will be times in life which cause us grief; mountains that we seem unequipped to climb; sorrows that we simple can’t forget and are not sure we really want to. We seem to think that whatever is in front of us cannot possibly be as good as what is behind us and is now no more. We all know that Paul’s life is probably not one we would enjoy copying because he obviously was a much stronger person than we could ever be. Why would we think that; because of what he went through and how he died? Those in the early church often suffered horrible deaths because they knew first-hand what they had found to be true. Have we managed to bury truth because it is not always pretty? Are we too absorbed with what is new and untried and therefore has to be more exciting? The next mountain is even higher!
A truth we cannot deny is that a coin has two sides. Maybe we should consider what Paul had to say in the book of Philippians - Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (4:11-12).
Can you take a moment and imagine what our world would be like if everyone could experience for himself what real contentment could be like? It seems like we always want what the other fellow has. Why could we not have listened the first time around; why did we have to experience the worst of life in order to appreciate the best? There is only one really perfect solution and yet it can be had by each of us without division. An unknown man gave us the correct and totally fulfilling answer to be had this side of heaven - Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5)
Dutch Sheets once said – “For those people who are teaching you – the ones who are giving you all these testimonies of what worked for them – that truth is fruit in them now. But it isn't transferred to you as fruit. It comes to you as seed. Whether it bears the same fruit in you depends on what you do with it, because all truth comes in seed form. If you do what they did and abide in My Word, that seed will grow in you also, and the truth will make you free, just as it has for them.”