All posts tagged: content

How Can You Be Content With Less?

I think most would agree being content is not an attitude that comes easy. I wish I could just wake up content, but I think the opposite is true; I wake up wanting. I believe this is why Paul tells us in Philippians 4:11 he has “learned how to be content with whatever I have.” Have you ever seen an advertisement suggesting, “Don’t worry, you don’t need this.” Nope! Billions and billions and billions are spent on pushing back against contentment, convincing us stuff, trips, and food will bring about completion, then we will be content. But it’s only good until the next thing comes along. It never stops. So where does wanting end and being content begin? Are you ready for this, because it’s pretty genius… Jesus! As Shannon said, and many before him, and many after him, Jesus is enough. The first key to giving generously is being content. Why? Because we no longer hold tightly to anything anymore. There are no more strongholds to what we believe is ours, or to what …

Do You Know the Secret to Generosity?

One of the all time greatest Disney movies is “Cool Runnings.” It is enticing–the struggle to overcome unbelievable odds. One of the climactic scenes of the movie has the two main characters discussing purpose. Derice, the bobsled driver, asks his coach, Irv, why he had cheated when he competed. Irv responds, “It’s quite simple, really. I had to win. You see, Derice, I’d made winning my whole life. And when you make winning your whole life, you have to keep on winning, no matter what. You understand that? A gold medal is a wonderful thing. But if you’re not enough without one, you’ll never be enough with one.” So often, we feel compelled to win. Sometimes we are so compelled we will go to any length to be the victor, even at the expense of our integrity. And this is not confined just to sports; in business, relationships, and even arguments, winning is paramount. Even our modern American culture is rife with language that tells us we have to have it all. Winning is having …

Do You Despise Waiting? Learn to be Content.

I spend a lot of time waiting. I wait for the coffee to stop dripping every morning. I wait for the washing machine to finish so I can move the clothes to the dryer. I wait for my kids in the pick-up line after school. I wait a lot. Since I spend so much time waiting, you’d think I’d be quite good at it. But the truth is, I’m not. I’m terrible at waiting. The worst part is I can’t just be still while I’m waiting. I’ve spent a great deal of time thinking about the process of waiting as our family is currently in a “season” of waiting. Since February, we’ve been waiting to become approved as foster parents. I’m waiting for the state of Georgia to ask me to take temporary custody of someone else’s child. It’s a strange feeling as I’m essentially waiting for the worst day of someone’s life to happen. And as I wait, I am overcome by the desire to “do something.” Surely there’s someone I can call or email …

Wanna Know a Secret?

One of the most quoted verses from the book of Philippians, or maybe even the entire Bible, is scarcely understood.  As a Biblical counselor, this passage in Philippians is one of my favorites. However, I never advise anyone to memorize this popular verse out of context. So, what does Paul mean when he says, “For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength” in Philippians 4:13? Our answer can be found in the previous verses: Not that I am speaking of being in need, for 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. – Philippians 4:11-12, ESV What’s the secret to Paul’s contentment? Paul is reminding us that no matter the circumstance, Christ is our strength. Paul’s life was a roller coaster. Whether he was preaching his first sermons, deepening his spiritual relationships, being put in prison for the gospel, being poisoned, or …

Do You Know the Secret to Contentment?

Contentment. How do you define contentment? Don’t wish for something you don’t have, but delight in what you do have. Be content with your vehicle, house, wardrobe, gadgets, etc. Don’t long for the life of someone else, but be happy with where you are in life. I think most of us hear definitions like that and think, “That sounds about right.” And while those are good and Biblical (Exodus 20:17), I think we miss what the Bible really means when it says to be content. In his letter to the church in Philippi, Paul writes, “I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength” (Philippians 12:12-13). When Paul writes this letter, he isn’t sitting in a 2 bedroom, 1 bath apartment that has loud neighbors. He’s not typing on an iPhone 4.  He’s not even eating beans and rice because the budget is tight.  He’s writing while …

This Week For Sunday

You may be familiar with the popular verse Philippians 4:13 which says, “For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” Such an empowering and uplifting verse! We hang it on our walls, print it on t-shirts, etch it in jewelry, and even tattoo it on our bodies. However, do you know the context of this scripture? Paul is writing to the church in Philippi from prison.  He is not writing to the church to address an issue, as he frequently does, but is writing to express his appreciation and affection for the church.  Even while in chains, Paul is content and joyful.  How? Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. – Philippians 4:11-13 As we continue the series “How’s That Workin’ for …