How To Be Content and Happy With What
Are you content and happy with the house, job,
spouse, money, car and stuff you have? There is absolutely nothing wrong
with wanting to have more stuff, but if we are discontent with what we
already have, we’ll never achieve more, or be truly happy. It’s
because it never ends – we’ll always want more! It’s an attitude
we have that keeps us wanting to have better and more stuff. This is
where the “grass is greener on the other side of the fence” attitude
derives from. We think we need more to be happy, but it is a farce.
“Better one handful with tranquility that two
handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind”. (Ecclesiastes 4:6)
Being in debt is like chasing after the wind. When
will you catch it? We can be content and happy with what we already have
when we realize two important facts. Fact number one: Change your
attitude. Having a better house, another job, a different spouse, a
bigger paycheck, a nicer car will not make us happier people. Having
more stuff will not bring us contentment in this life, yet we are
continually complaining about not having enough stuff or wanting better
stuff. We are making ourselves unhappy by our attitude.
We have been conditioned into believing, since we
were children that happiness and contentment comes from having more
stuff and better stuff. We complain so much about what we don’t have
that we never actually achieve anything more
- our attitude actually keeps us stuck within our own discontent
of not having anything, or at least, we think we don’t have anything.
“So I commend the enjoyment of life, because
nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be
glad. Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life
God has given him under the sun”. (Ecclesiastes 8:15)
We think we don’t have anything or we think the
stuff we have is not good enough because we’re always comparing our
lives with others. We look across the street and think our neighbor’s
lawn looks greener than our own lawn. We’ve been blinded - it’s a
mirage! Your neighbor’s are unhappy with what they have too because
they are comparing their life with yours.
“Each one should retain the place in life that
the Lord assigned to him and to which God has called him.” (1
Fact number two: When we stop being discontented
and unhappy and we give our lives over to God we realize we are happy
with what we already have – it all belongs to God anyway! Why
couldn’t we see that before? Because the “wanting attitude”
distracts us from the ways of God. But when we give up the wanting we
come to know how blessed we are to drive the seven-year old car that we
have, to live in the smaller home on the block, and to be utilizing the
same clothes we wore last year. Life is good!
God let’s us know that happiness is not having
walk-in closets crammed with new clothes and shoes, or having the
biggest house in our subdivision, and happiness certainly is not finding
a different spouse. Happiness comes from within. Happiness comes from
letting go of the negative feelings we have allowed to bombard us every
Contentment comes through Christ’s love for us.
He gives us the peace we need to be content with our life as it is! God
did not create us to be greedy for more or to make a million dollars.
God made us to enjoy life in its simplest ways, to be blessed with what
we already have and what He has given us. God wants us to live life to
its fullest now! But how can we do that if we’re always complaining
about what we don’t have?
“But godliness with contentment is great gain.
For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of
it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that”.
(1 Timothy 6:6-8)
What’s all this “striving to have more stuff”
sermons we’ve been hearing lately all about? Are Christians being
deceived into thinking its ok to strive for riches and status on their
own terms? Whatever happened about striving to be all that we can be
through God? Or what about striving to have more stuff through God?
Without God at the helm its pure humanism, plain and simple, and goes
against the very spirit of love and how to love others appropriately in
God made us to be real people, not without worries
or cares but to be honest and loving; never to compare ourselves to
others, but to strive to be the best we can through Him. That is where
happiness and contentment can be found.
“Keep your lives free from the love of money and
be content with what you have”. (Hebrews 13:5)