Biblical contentment does not involve the fatalism that resigns itself to the notion, "Well, things just are as they are, and there is nothing I can do about them!" Some necessary changes lie right before us, requiring our God-enabled actions as led by His Spirit. "Work with your own hands" commanded the Apostle Paul of those responsibilities we can fulfill without waiting on our Lord to part a sea or move a mountain (I Thessalonians 4:11). We increasingly enter into the realized contentment of Christ as we keep our eyes open and our hands ready to change those things within our means to accomplish.
Some challenges of change, however, seemingly lie beyond our capacities to fulfill. Regarding those, do we simply throw up our hands, consigning the matters to the "nothing I can do about them" category? Hardly.
"Wait on the Lord. Be of good courage and He shall strengthen thine heart. Wait, I say, on the Lord" (Psalm 27:14).
"Wait on the Lord and keep His way" (Psalm 37:34).
Born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are never more active than when still, if we recognize the presence and involvement of God in matters that seem to indicate His absence. In such times, we join Moses, who "endured as seeing Him who is invisible" (Hebrews 11:27). We actively choose to believe that our Heavenly Father is present and accounted for, as it were. He attends to the matter of "present" by fulfilling His promise to "work together for good" all things in our lives (Romans 8:28). The "accounted for" aspect rests upon us. Will we "see" the Invisible, affirming the activity of God on our behalf even if the heart and hand of our Lord seem far away? We are never more engaged and active than in those times when our hearts must courageously believe and declare, against all appearances, that God is at hand, and is working by His hand. As the Psalmist declared, we "keep His way" while we "wait on the Lord." Thus, there is always something we can do about necessary changes, whether outwardly or inwardly. Moreover, in a lifetime of walking by faith, the latter way of "seeing Him who is invisible" accomplishes far more than we can imagine. "Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power which worketh in us…" (Ephesians 3:20).
The presence of God is often most confirmed by the appearance of His absence. Thus, anyone who has ever accused Christians of practicing an "easy believism" has never actually tried to live by faith in the Lord Jesus. Much courage is required, as provided by God, but as accessed by our choices to trust Him when the darkness is deep and the apparent stillness of God's hand seems overwhelming. Great changes take place in such times, no less and even more than when we can put our hands to the plow and till the soil that lie before us. Christians are not fatalists. We do not resign ourselves to the "nothing I can do about it" category of futility. On the contrary, there is always something we can do. We change those things that we can. And, through Christ and by faith, we change those things that we cannot.
"We walk by faith, not by sight."
(II Corinthians 7:5)
Weekly Memory Verse
Godliness with contentment is great gain.
(I Timothy 6:6)