Victory over discontent
What a great series this has been thus far. I think there may be a few more. May we have some quick reminders.
Faith is a victory picture here
Victory overcoming sin.
Victory overcoming anxiety, boredom, depression and despair.
Faith is a confident belief in Jesus Christ that can give us victory over discontent.
Discontent can be related, or at least closely related to boredom. It may cause anxiety and leave one feeling in despair. this is not uncommon, it is very common, and maybe you can think of it as envy too. Discontent because of what others have or how others seem to be.
George Herbert “A man’s discontent is his worse evil.”
Oscar Wilde says “… it is the first step in the progress of a man or a nation”
Thomas Edison “Restlessness and discontent are the necessities of progress.”
So, discontent can be discouraging and disabling, but can also be changing and empowering, hum, how can it be both, well let’s look together.
Discontent picture here
Discontent (american heritage dictionary) Absence of contentment; dissatisfaction; a restless longing for better circumstances.
But wait, I said it can be bad or good. Consider what Gordon Graham said.
“There are two different kinds of discontent in this world: the discontent that works, and the discontent that wrings its hands. The first gets what it wants, and the second loses what it has.”
Discontent: Wringing hands: again it is the absence of contentment, oftentimes as a result of covetousness. Leading to grumbling and complaining, which we are not to do (Turn to Php2:14-16)
php2:14-16 “14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing; 15 so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain.”
Danger of discontent
Impacts our relationship with God (Eph5:3-5; Col3:5)
Eph5:3-5- A series of covetousness things listed there, should be no part of Christian (similar found (Col3:5)
When we are discontent because of what we don’t have, then we do not appreciate what we do have. Ungrateful for what God has given us.
Edwin Lutzer “Complaining about our lot in life might seem quite innocent in itself, but God takes it personally.”
It hurts ourselves(1Tim6:6)
Many say that contentment is a virtue that is highly praised and valued:
Socrates: “He is richest who is content with the least.”
Unknown: “The contented man is never poor, and the discontented never rich.”
1Tim6:6 “6 But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment.”
Discontentment hurts those who posses it
Seneca: “It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, who is poor.”
We make ourselves unhappy when we are discontent.
Discontent people are also prone to hurt others.
They can become grumblers, complainers; affecting family, friends and brethren
Ruining not only ourselves but causing damage (hurt) to others.
Marlene Dietrich “Grumbling is the death of love.”
Consider grumbling is contrary and condemned by scripture (1Cor10:10; Php2:14-15)
1Cor10 speaks of some who grumbled that were destroyed by the destroyer
turn to Php2:14-15 “14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing; 15 so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world,”
True Contentment found in faith in Christ.
Now comes the time for more scripture as we get to the teaching, application section.
Jesus provides contentment:
Through His teaching
13 Someone in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me.” 14 But He said to him, “Man, who appointed Me a judge or arbitrator over you?”
15 Then He said to them, “Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.”
Don’t be content in material things
Be content and rich toward God
16 And He told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man was very productive. 17 “And he began reasoning to himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?’
18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 ‘And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and be merry.” ’
20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?’ 21 “So is the man who stores up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”
Through His teachings on where to store up your treasures (Mt6:19-21; 1Pt1:4)
Earthly treasures will decay. Let me show you, don’t take my word, takes Jesus and His teaching
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 “But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal;
Your stored up teachers will reveal you heart.
21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Jesus through His promises
To always be with us (Mt28:20; Heb13:5-6)
5 Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,” 6 so that we confidently say, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid. What will man do to me?”
Remember God’s providential care (Mt6:30-33, 7:7-11, 10:29-31)
29 “Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
31 “So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.
Through faith (strong conviction) in Jesus we can learn to be content.
Consider the words of Paul (Php4:11-13, 19)
11 Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.
13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
What are the “all” things? Contentment regardless of circumstances!
It was said: “Contentment is not the fulfillment of what you want, but the realization of how much you already have.”
19 And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
Content/discontent picture inserted here
Two tents, content and the other discontent, where do you live?
Contentment can be learned, like Paul did, through a belief (strong conviction) in Jesus Christ.
Overcome discontentment by remembering (Gal2:20)
20 “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.
(Invitation) (Song) (Prayer)