Tuesday, May 7, 2013
CULTIVATING CONTENTMENT IN CHRIST -- PART 5
Will we ever be totally contented? Not on this earth! God is daily growing us for earthly good. And He is preparing us for Heaven. “Whom the Lord loves He chastens” (Heb. 12:6 ). “Crosses are not curses.” I used to call God’s disciplines “dark strokes” on my canvas of life. Not at all! As I have drawn closer to my heavenly Father and have more carefully absorbed His Word and His love for me, I have come to realize that His acts of discipline are “love strokes.” I thank Him for every one of them even though they excruciatingly hurt at the time. “Whom the Lord loves He chastens.”The Lord chastens us because He loves us! This should help us to not mistake the purpose of our afflictions. Our afflictions are really mercies that often blossom and bear fruit. “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness ( Heb. 12:11). “With God it is alright. He is really very kind.” He sanctifies us through pain.
We considered Psalm 37:5 last time. Commit, trust, wait, do not fret, delight yourself. Have you applied that to your personal life situations this past month? If you did, without doubt you have paeans of praise to give to your heavenly Father. Do you have a wayward child? Or a needy husband? Are you worn with grief over the thoughts of their destiny? Has it helped? No! Of course not. You have not committed the matter to the only One who can handle it. Think of it this way. Yes, you bore your child and he/she has your blood flowing through the veins to sustain the body. That child is yours, but your influence is limited. That child is on Christ’s mind to a greater concerned and loving degree than on yours. He shed His blood to save that soul. Your child is more His than yours. The Father loves him/her more than you do. Don’t you believe that He can do the better job? Without doubt He can! That is practicing/fleshing out the Word. “Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10
God warns teachers of His precious Word to be extremely cautious that they practice what they teach. But teachers don’t live on the mountain top all the time. The enemy goads them just like he does everyone else. Scripture tells us that he is a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (1 Pet.5:8). God has reasons for allowing him to attack us. I have a confession to make. I started my day with a discontented heart a while back. I knew I could not remain in that condition after all I have been saying to you. Furthermore, my discontentment was extremely grievous to the Lord. I was leaving Him out. What did I do? My first thought was, “What have I been saying to those women out there?” I knew I had been directing you to the Word, so I went back to Part 3 of this series to find out exactly what I said to you.There it was -- Isaiah 40:28-31; also 41:10. It is not easy to relate this, but I want you to know that I’m not on a spiritual pedestal. Our Father deals with each of us for several obvious reasons. Always for His glory.
“I will call upon Thee; For Thou wilt answer me” (Psalm 86:7). “For Thou art great and doest wondrous things.” David prayed this with complete confidence and with full assurance in the Lord. Confidence in Him is contentment. Be assured that God is and that He will answer for our good and for His own Name’s sake. For His own honor and glory. He knows your heart cry even before you utter it. He longs to hear and to answer. Jesus groans for your need.
“Day by day and with each passing moment, strength I find to meet my trials here.” Because He victoriously lives.
What have you been learning about contentment in your life?