[Papercut Press Publishing] 1998-11-03 - Contentment

1 Timothy 6:8 And if we have food and covering, with these we will be content.

We are continuing on with contentment. Today we will look again at the opposite of contentment, Covetous Yearning.

For the last two years on election days I have done a devotional that had something to do with the elections. This is not the case this year. If you would like to re-visit one of the election devotionals you may visit our web page and look up either devotional from 11-4-96 or 11-4-97, both have to do with election/voting stuff.

2. Covetous Yearning

I have been looking for a job that has less hours recently and so my resume has been going out. On Tuesday I had an interview with a company for a position and was one of six to get a Wednesday call-back. From the six of us, up to four would be hired.

We all introduced ourselves, I was last, and we were to tell our names and why we wanted to work there. The first five all said the same thing, my name is, blah-blah, and I want to make a ton of money. Then I got my turn, I knew my name, but my motivation for working was quite foreign to everyone. I simply said, "I want a job where I work fewer hours". I don't think anyone understood why I was there.

"Let your conversation be without covetousness, and be content with such things as you have." Hebrews 13:5 The others in my interview room were driven by one thing, Greed! Greed has the common trait of causing us to want more things, while forgetting or disliking what we have already.

There is no need for greed. Those who are greedy punish themselves. Their desires for more or better forbid them to ever be content with the blessings they have already.

Contentment is really the opposite of greed. Contentment allows us to look upon the things we have been blessed with as coming from the gracious providence of God. Even more so, contentment sees the ends for which these things have been granted to us. They are there to aid us in our service of God in the world. Lusting after that which is unattainable is a certain way of attaining both dis-contentment and ultimately unhappiness.

"Do not behave like fools, for whatever the fool has his eye on, there is his whole heart." Angela of Foligno

"Envy armed Cain contrary to nature and instituted the death which is vindicated seven times. Envy made Joseph a slave. Envy is the death dealing sting, the hidden weapon, the sickness of nature, the bitter poison, the self will emanation, the bitter dart, the nail of the soul, the fire in the heart, the flame burning on the inside." Gregory of Nyssa

Soli Deo Gloria,