Contentment. I sometimes think it’s the most elusive thing in the world. We all want something don’t we? A better job, a boyfriend, a girlfriend, more money, a child, better health. Even when things in our life are going well, we tend to still think about that one thing we just don’t have. Sometimes it seems that the very things we want are the things other people take for granted. Maybe you think you are content but ask yourself, when was the last time you moaned about the rain or the roadworks or the price of petrol. See, we always think life could be just that wee bit better.
I know I definitely have struggled with being content and at peace. You know that old saying, “Is the glass half-full or half-empty?” I tend not just to think that it is half-empty, but I also worry about it being knocked over. And yet, I have plenty of good things in my life. I was raised in a loving, close-knit family, I have lots of friends, a good education, good health, and I love my job. But the thing that makes me able to be content is that I know that Jesus Christ loves me. When I look back on my life I honestly can’t remember a time when I didn’t believe that God exists, that He is holy and perfect, and that I am not perfect, not even close. Even as a little girl, I understood that my sins meant I couldn’t go to Heaven, but I also knew the good news that Jesus Christ took my place, paid for what I did wrong, and His perfect life was chalked up to my account. Why did he do all this for me? Not because of anything I did, but just because he loves me. Christ’s love for me gave me a purpose in life – it made me want to love him back.
Knowing Christ loves you, gives you a rock-solid stability in your life that means that no matter what happens, you’re okay. It gives you contentment. “But hold on here”, you may be thinking, “you’ve described a pretty idyllic existence. What do you really know about being content when times are tough?” I know that for a lot of folk reading this, their lives have been full of much harder things than anything I’ve ever had to deal with. But for me, the truths I always believed about Christ’s love for me really were put to the test when my mum, whom I loved very much, fought a losing battle with cancer. How can you possibly be content in a situation like that? It’s not easy, but it is simple. See, contentment doesn’t come from things like a nice flat or a new car. It doesn’t come from situations like a better job or better health; it doesn’t even come from people that you love. These things change all the time. Knowing Jesus Christ and his love gives you a purpose, a peace, a stability, a contentment that nothing can change. Why? Because it’s based not on what you do or what you have or what other people think of you – it’s based on him loving you so much he went to the cross for you. The really great thing is that you can spend the rest of your life loving him back.