READ: Philippians 4:10-13
- Nope, I can’t jump across the Grand Canyon. Nope, not even if “Jesus wanted me to.” This verse just doesn’t have limitless scope. This isn’t about physical feats of strength nor doing well on a final exam for which you’ve inadequately prepared. This is not even about running a marathon. This text has a context and that context has to do with living life in the ups and downs while not losing faith or focus.
- If you think doing without is impossible…it isn’t…with Jesus. Paul’s words present unique challenges. Living with abundance appears easy to those who are without. Yet, those with abundance face a different set of challenges. Challenges to be prideful and self-congratulatory. We would do well not to assume about situations we don’t know personally.
- On the other hand, if you think living with little (or nothing) is hard, it’s possible you’ve not met someone who has great contentment living at economic levels most know nothing about. But, they too are faced with unique challenges. They are tempted to lack confidence and trust in a God who supplies what we all really need. Or, if you are like most, you really don’t know either side personally and all you can do is speculate about what it’s like. Paul’s claim, though hard to test, is that Jesus empowers us to learn, through our circumstances, whatever we need to learn to be content. That sounds like a huge task to me.
- On a scale of 1 (I can’t afford to eat today) to 10 (I have no qualms about spending significant amounts), where are you?
- Between what points on the scale would you find it possible to be content?
- Why do you think Paul was able to find contentment when his numbers were sometimes down around 2 or 3 and potentially up near 7 or 8?
PRAY: Thank God for whatever circumstance your find yourself in. Pray that you are learning contentment, in spite of the pain the learning may be producing. Ask God to help you be sensitive to those who face circumstances significantly different from yours.