Learned Contentment

Philippians 4:11Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.…

This past week, the lottery was the largest it’s ever been. I suspect that sometime soon it will again, grow to some other outrageous number and the masses will once again, clamor to get in on it ~ never once understanding that it’s their money ~ their buying in ~ that pushes it up so high.

While I’ve never been a dedicated lottery player, I was addicted to Publisher’s Clearing House and played in an organized fashion for far too many years. Yes, I said, played. It is a game… no purchase needed to win/ be entered and yet… never once, between 1994 and 2001 did i ever remotely won anything. The subscriptions weren’t even free.
We were in deep NEED. I felt divine urging to continue to faithfully send in each mailer on time, writing it on the calendar. It was very sad.

I admit to playing the lottery every so often and I admit to feeling very down when someone wins… I used to search out any info on them to see why God would allow them to win and not me.

Then, just recently did it occur to me why it’s permissible,(1 Cor. 10:23) but not beneficial for me to purchase lottery tickets. It goes against what I say I believe.

Matthew 6:33 ~ …”For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

I’ve heard myself say, “Seek first the kingdom…”(Matt. 6:33), but quite honestly not having a full understanding of just what exactly it means. I didn’t study it, nor have I sought godly wisdom on it. It was and still is a foundational building block for me; a way to stay focused on the Father’s love for me.

Then the other day, I was wandering through a variety store. I questioned myself. “Why Paula, are you wandering aimlessly through this store?” I replied to myself, “I’m shopping.” And as if in a conversation with a good, but wise friend, the response was, “Well, you know what shopping really is, right? (I didn’t answer, these questions are statements) “Shopping is wandering around looking for something to spend money on.”Now, while this may not be a profound statement to you, for me it was “could-have-had-a-V8” moment. Shopping is NOT the result of need, it is motivated by want. I’d already picked up what I came in for, .99. But for whatever reason, I was looking to spend more… “HOW CAN I BE TRUSTED WITH MILLIONS WHEN I CAN’T EVEN BE FAITHFUL WITH THE HUNDREDS?”

I paid my $1.07 (.99 + taxes) and walked out pondering the thought.
It lingered in my mind. I’ve always known that this world’s system of things functions on debt. Commercials are there to entertain and create a false “need”. the words: “Sale” “BOGO” “FREE with purchase“,etc. are all designed to get you to part with your $$$$.$$. An we buy into the debt system, often relying on ourselves to be wise enough to know when to say when…. well, I’m your huckleberry. I’ve learned to tune out commercials that entice, except when it concerns groceries and even then I proceed with caution.

Fast forward to a couple of days ago. I was still pondering the whole shopping conversation while watching a bible study. And as if in a conversation with a good, but wise friend, the was whispered to my spirit, “Contentment will keep you out of lack.” I responded, “I have learned to be content.”His response, deep and freeing “Have you?”
I pondered that question. I thought I had, but the discontent in my heart from not winning the lottery (I didn’t even buy a ticket) spoke otherwise. My hubby works hard and diligently. I, in my daughter’s words, “tend to my vines very carefully; Shooing away the little foxes. And like the writer of this portion of scripture. “ I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.”
It’s just that I haven’t learned the Father’s plan, the Kingdom’s rhyme and reason of what I’d learned of the world’s lack. sigh
Yes, it’s a process. I must learn to say “no” to my flesh. I truly don’t need new furniture… I have children who disrespect the old stuff. sigh…

I am learning to be content, in a Kingdom sort of way. There is blessing in contentment and I believe that it allows the Father to bless us extraordinarily!
Ephesians 3: 14 “….For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; 17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,

21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. (KJV)

Selah

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