SCRIPTURE: Philippians 4:11 (TM)
Actually, I don't have a sense of needing anything personally. I've learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances.
Philip Parham tells the story of a rich industrialist who was disturbed to find a fisherman sitting lazily beside his boat. "Why aren't you out there fishing?" he asked.
"Because I've caught enough fish for today," said the fisherman. "Why don't you catch more fish than you need?' the rich man asked. "What would I do with them?"
"You could earn more money," came the impatient reply, "and buy a better boat so you could go deeper and catch more fish. You could purchase nylon nets, catch even more fish, and make more money. Soon you'd have a fleet of boats and be rich like me."
The fisherman asked, "Then what would I do?" "You could sit down and enjoy life," said the industrialist. "What do you think I'm doing now?" the fisherman replied as he looked placidly out to sea.
Why do we do what we do? We are such driven people – driven to succeed, driven to achieve, driven to obtain, driven to get ahead, driven to accumulate … just driven … but are we happy? Do we have peace? Are we satisfied? Are we really fulfilled?
While on our Caribbean cruise this past January we heard continuously Bob Marley’s song: “Don’t worry, be happy.” We can call it “laziness” or a hundred other things, but they just might have discovered something about living that has been lost by the rest of the world.
It seems that we are always in perpetual motion in our attempt to get ahead and to have more. When do we reach the point that enough is enough?
It has been heard numerous times about people that grew up poor, but didn’t know it because they were happy. Their homes were filled with laughter. There was a lot of sharing and if somebody down the road was in need … well, we reached out and shared what little we had. As one person said, “Well, we could always add another quart of water to whatever we were cooking.”
Life is meant to be lived and in living in a relationship with Christ and others there is contentment. Paul shared a good word that no matter what we face we should learn to be content. And contentment begins with acceptance. And acceptance starts at surrendering to Jesus. “All to Jesus I surrender, All to him I freely give…”
Help us to accept our place in life regardless of the circumstances. Help us to surrender to you in our daily living so that we can start to live.
Benjamin Franklin: Content makes poor men rich; discontent makes rich men poor.
Max Lucado: Tomorrow’s joy is fathered by today’s acceptance. Acceptance of what, at least for the moment, you cannot alter.