Read Philippians 4:10-13
Learned: acquire by experience, pursuit of knowledge
If something is learned it doesn’t come natural.
I learned to ride a bike, through instruction, through practice, and through many hours of my father patiently teaching me how to do so.
Image Credit: Chibcha, Creative Commons
I learned a second a language by sitting in my dual-immersion elementary school classroom and speaking Spanish with friends on the playground.
I learned how to cook by . . . just kidding, I’m still learning how to do that.
None of these things came natural to me. I wasn’t born with the ability to ride a bike or speak Spanish or cook. In fact, some of these take more work than any others.
The same is true when it comes to contentment. It is learned by learning Christ.
Contentment is not found when all of our circumstances are perfect. Contentment is found in the perfect One, Christ Jesus. Contentment takes practice and continuous effort to remember who Jesus is and who He says we are in Him. It’s letting go of the idea that when everything is perfect, I will be content.
It’s releasing the idea that when _________ happens, then I’ll be content. There is no circumstance that will make you content. There is no fulfilled desire that will bring contentment like the fulfillment of Jesus. No job, no relationship, no shopping spree, no amount of money, no season of life, no TV show, no diet that will bring contentment like Christ.
Until we understand that, we keep looking to other things to satisfy, rather than being satisfied in Him alone. If contentment is learned, than I say let’s open up the Book and dive right into the lesson. No need to waste anytime when we can sit with the Teacher and learn from Him.
1. What are the circumstances Paul has learned to be content with?
2. Why is contentment learned?
3. How can you learn to be content? Where does true contentment come from?