“I don’t say this out of need, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.” (Philippians 4:11)
Our world promotes dissatisfaction with our lives. We are constantly bombarded with newer and better things that will make our lives more complete if only we would obtain them! If we listen to the world, we will always be comparing the lifestyles and possessions of others with our own, and we will always be dissatisfied. If our contentment comes from possessions, activities, or other people, these can be altered or removed. If our contentment comes from our relationship with Christ, there is absolutely nothing that can take that away.
Paul had enjoyed power and status among his people. He had also been imprisoned and bound in stocks in the depths of a jail cell. He had stood before a king and been stoned almost to death by an angry mob. Paul had enjoyed the benefits and pleasures of life, yet he could give them all up and still be filled with the joy of the Lord. His contentment did not depend on his environment but on his relationship with Christ.
Contentment frees you to enjoy every good thing God has given you. Contentment demonstrates your belief that God loves you and has your best interest in mind. Discontent stems from the sin of ingratitude and a lack of faith that God loves you enough to provide for all that you need. Strive to be grateful for all that God has given you. A grateful heart has no room for envy.