Contentment Is A Gift


Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless—like chasing the wind.

~Ecclesiastes 6:8


“I’ve never met a rich man who was happy, but I have only very occasionally met a poor man who did not want to become a rich man.

~Malcolm Muggeridge

Jesus asked a thought-provoking question in Mark 8:36, “What do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?” One of the things I like about Solomon’s teachings is his brutal honesty. Solomon was not an orator of pious platitudes, he cut to the chase and simply stated the unvarnished truth. A clever person can accumulate wealth. Those who are willing to work hard, sacrifice and save can accumulate wealth. Morgan county has more than one millionaire who accumulated his money by this age-old method but accumulating wealth is one thing, enjoying the wealth you have accumulated in another. God allows us to pursue whatever interest we choose. He gives us the freedom to establish our priorities. If we choose to, we can make accumulating money the driving force of our life but the human heart has only enough room for one consuming passion. The two things that all humans seem to want is riches and long life but both these desires are eventually overruled by death. Death reminds us that we are not in control and long life does not guarantee happiness. Solomon said, ” A man might live a thousand years twice over but still not find contentment.” Most of us would agree that money can’t make us happy or content but we would like to have more so we would know for sure.

Think of it this way: imagine there is a “Joy” button in heaven and it located on the right handle of God’s throne. God gives us all the freedom to choose our interest but He controls the joy. A man in his pride can set his will to pursue any goal he chooses and he may accomplish many things in this pursuit but the one thing he has no control over is his “joy.” Solomon believed and so do I, that joy is an enablement that comes from God. A man can live without regard to Christ but he will live a wasted life. He can delight himself in anything his soul desires but without Christ, he will find no satisfaction. When he is old, he will be frustrated and unhappy because he has spent his life chasing the wind {things without substance}. Men work themselves to death trying to accumulate enough to satisfy their appetites which in the end proves to be insatiable. What a waste! Solomon said, “For that person who finds no satisfaction in life; it would have been better for him to be born dead.” At least the still born baby goes directly to the place of the dead without suffering.

Duane Garrett [New American Commentary] sums it up for us: [1] Life is wasted when we make it a quest for riches and such a quest leads to a bitter end. All misers die unhappy and alone and many don’t have enough friends to warrant a funeral. [2] To be able to enjoy life is a grace gift from God. Those who have the gift are free from the anxiety of mortality [3] Nothing is more pitiful than to be rich and unable to enjoy it: no amount of prosperity can compensate for a life of misery.

  • Our granddaughter Chloe is five and sad to say, she does love money. She came by my office before going to SAMS with Big Mama and her crew. Needless to say, she wanted some money. She told Big Mama before arriving at the office, “Can’t you just sit a hat down and people put money in it.” I told her, you have to do something to earn the money, like sing or dance. Then I remembered, she quotes the pledge of allegiance to me for money. I told June, we can set her up in the foyer of the church and let her put her hat on the floor. She can quote the pledge for money as people come out of church. Big Mama didn’t like my idea. [Imagine that] I’m telling you: this kid would beg if we would let her.
  • NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER, May 3 at the Fountain in front of Central Baptist Church. Everyone is invited: it is not a denominational event. We meet at 11:30 a.m.
  • Our cousin Karen Emerich made slight improvement again yesterday but we are just glad to make progress. I think Mark Brown is there at UAB also. I think he has heart issues and he’s only 43 years old.
  • I randomly reached into my book chest and grabbed a note book to write in and there was a prayer from April 25, 2015. It was very interesting reading to say the least. I did rejoice to see one answer to prayer.

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