"Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philippians 4:11-13
Hale Koa, the chocolate lab and Heinz, the Dachshund know how to be content with one another. Round and round they will run through piles of leaves for hours on end, until Heinz has to go home. Although Hale Koa is much larger than Heinz and Heinz usually brings his sister Penny; making it twice as much running for Hale Koa. The dogs have learned to be content. But, it was not always that way. In the beginning they had to learn to like one another. There was much barking until it was decided that a big yard and running around together would be the best option! The key to their relationship is they have "learned" to be content.
While we are not dogs. We can learn to rely on the promises in God's word.
In the book, The Bumps Are What You Climb On by Warren Wiersbe he says, "The word content does not mean "complacent,"... Actually, the word Paul used is best translated "contained." It carries the idea of self-sufficiency. In other words, Paul is saying, "I don't depend on things on the inside." This inner sufficiency, of course, is the power of Jesus Christ."
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13
How do we do that when circumstances seem overwhelming?
"And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:19
We can trust that God will meet our needs.
I know that when I was going through really great trials in my life I had friends that would quote Philippians 4:11 to me. They would try and comfort me with how Paul was content in his circumstances and I should try to be content too! I was praying, I was in God's Word, I was in fellowship with other believers and still the circumstances of the trial were so great that I was "NOT" comforted by Philippians 4:11. In fact, I felt even worse. I felt I failed God.
What Paul is trying to tell us is that he had to "learn" to be content. To be contained. Meaning he was abiding in Christ.
That is why Jesus says in Matthew 6:33-34 "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."
You do not need to feel like you failed God. Whatever it is in your life you are going through: your marriage, your children, your job, family, illness, financial, etc... Give God first place in your life. Learn to be "contained". Learn to be "content." Abide in Christ!
Remember, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
God Bless You Today!