“Content as Paul”
Paul wrote to the Phillipian church while under house arrest in Rome in the early A.D. 60's, this condition alone makes the passage in Phil. 4:11 all the more impressive. Paul wrote there "Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content:" This should help the Christian put their own lives in perspective. We suffer a lot in this life that is minor to say the least. We get frustrated when we are not heard; we get discouraged when little problems seem to mount up; we struggle getting people to hear the instruction we are giving at our places of employment. Paul was in prison in Rome and was content. To be content is to be in a state of peaceful happiness(New Oxford American Dictionary). That is to say that Paul was not fretting and the reason for that is stated in Phil. 4:12-13: "I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Paul leaned on God in every situation in life so that no matter what was the case for him he knew that God would care for him. I am not trying to dismiss the daily frustrations of this life, they are real and can be greatly annoying. If we will lean on God more we will find that we will have less stress in our lives. I am not trying to say that it is a simple flip of a switch, it is a committment to living as He would have us live and accepting the peace that He affords us because of our service to Him. That committment is one that we made when we were baptized for the remission of sins. There is no question that Satan challenges us daily and when his efforts get him what he wants he will bring those same challenges up for us again and again. We must lean on God and allow for him to deliver us from the temptation as He has said can happen. Paulwrote about this in 1 Corinthians 10:13 "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it." Paul had accepted this truism in his own life and we need to likewise.We need to also accept that we are capable of great things because of our relationship with Christ and the Father. Realizing that capablilty will help us learn to be content wherever we are in this life.This allows us to live like Paul did, in peace with God not worrying about the cares of this life. In doing so we know that God will bless us as he sees fit and will guide us and guard us from the wiles of the devil just as He did for Paul. Let us let God do this for us and may He guide us daily to the feeling of contentment that only He can provide. God bless us all in our daily walk in this life.