May 11, 2009

Contentment Is Freeing…

Written by Boyd Bailey

Contentment Is Freeing… “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house…”

Moses needed a game plan. His job was more than one man could handle…managing a nation. It was God sized. So God gave him rules to facilitate the freedom desired by the people. He gave Moses and us these top ten rules so we could enjoy our freedom, and not destroy our freedom. One of the rules relates to coveting. Covet means I want what you have. I want your house, your car, your spouse, your health or your bank account.

Instead of being grateful for what I have, I am discontent with what I don’t have. It is to long and crave for something in an unhealthy manner. To covet is to lose perspective and to do things you normally would not do in order to gain something you really don’t need. Coveting creates expectations that can’t be met. To not covet is important, because it made God’s top ten of don’ts. Indeed, coveting is tamed by contentment.

Contentment is the opposite of coveting. It is not driven to have more, but is motivated by giving more. Contentment is focused on what’s best for others. How can I invest in you and serve you? It is also based on trust in the Lord. He knows exactly what I need. It ultimately comes down to God and his sovereign choice in my life. Can He be trusted to provide just what I need and want? Or, do I have to take matters into my own hands and go after things that will consume my time, money, and wreck my home and health?

Do I go after things, which in the long run take a lot of sideways energy and focus? Bigger and better is not always best. In fact, this is a trap; bigger and better many times leads to bankruptcy; maybe not financially, but relationally, physically and spiritually. Monitor your motives. Enjoy the freedom contentment brings and avoid the snare of complication and bondage that covetousness invites. “If they obey and serve him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment” (Job 36:11). ‘Does my lifestyle lend itself to contentment and service to others?’ ‘How can I simplify my situation?’

Related Readings: Joshua 7:7; Proverbs 19:23; Luke 3:14; 1 Timothy 6:6-8

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