Recently, I have become painfully aware of some areas of discontentment in my life through new circumstances that have developed—some even involving ministry. It’s no big shocker to most that I’m not perfect, but what bothers me is the depth of my sin. What I’m seeing is a rebellious nature and unwillingness to allow God to call the shots in these situations. In the context of ministry, I’m attempting to barter with God. My train of thinking goes like this: I’ll serve You and sacrifice much for You, God, but I want to do it in my way and on my terms.
When it comes right down to it, I’m not satisfied with the job God is doing and realizing that this is my evaluation of my Lord’s work shocks me. Worst of all, my discontentment reveals that I am viewing Christ as not being sufficient. The lack of contentment in these areas betrays who I am in Christ, all that I possess in Christ and the gospel ministry to which He has called me. This too is very disturbing.
As I have been praying for wisdom to work through these situations, I providentially came across a very helpful article entitled “The Secret of Contentment,” by Dr. William Barcley. He writes, “Contentment is one of the most difficult Christian virtues to attain. Almost four hundred years ago, Jeremiah Burroughs referred to the ‘rare jewel’ of Christian contentment. It is safe to say that contentment is no more common in our day than it was in Burroughs’. Yet, it remains one of the most crucial virtues. A contented Christian is the one who best knows God’s sovereignty and rests in it. A contented Christian trusts God, is pure in heart, and is the one most willing to be used of God—however God sees fit.”
I have a lot of learning to do and Barcley’s thoughts are the help I need to grow in these new “opportunities” for growth. In case you’re in the same boat in this season of your life, here’s the entire article.