Content is defined as a state of happiness and satisfaction. A few words we might use as a synonym for content are fulfilled, cheerful, glad, restful, peaceful.
How often, I wonder, would we describe ourselves as being content? The apostle Paul went through many, many dreadful life-threatening situations, yet declared he knew how to be happy, content, no matter what.
Priscilla Shirer tells a story in her book, Awaken, about a family who went on a safari in Africa. Their goal was to check off the sighting of the “Big Five”; elephant, rhinoceros, buffalo, lion, and leopard.
Although they managed to check off four of the animals, they’d yet to spot a rhino.
This fact disturbed one family member. To the point he was miserable and unable to enjoy the magnificent beauty of the things that surrounded him.
He was not content.
Seeing the other four animals, and I’m sure there were many more spectacular sights besides the big five, wasn’t enough. He wouldn’t be happy until he saw a rhinoceros.
We may shake our heads and think, How silly. With everything God allowed him to see and experience, he’s gonna’ pout because he didn’t get to see a rhino?
True. To our way of thinking, perhaps we feel the experience alone should have brought joy to his heart. However, what about us? What is our level of contentment?
How many times do we pout and get all huffy because we don’t get that ONE thing we have our hearts set on?
How many times do we ignore all the good gifts God places in our life, and pine away for the ONE thing we don’t have?
When I look at my life, I’d have to say I’ve pouted over missing more than one rhino. I’ve pouted over many rhinos.
Right now I’m keeping my eyes open for one particular rhinoceros which I do believe God will shoo out of the bush into my field of vision one day. Until that time, I mustn’t lose sight of all the wonderful blessings God has already given and is currently giving.
What about you? Any rhinos you’re pouting over, and in doing so, missing out on all the other good things?
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Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of contentment in every situation, whether it be a full stomach or hunger, plenty or want; for I can do everything God asks me to with the help of Christ who gives me the strength and power. Philippians 4:11-13 (TLB)
You can find my March Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.
I wish you well.