“Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content.”Philippians 4:11 nkjv
Chapter 4 of Philippians has much to consider, practice and pray.
Paul writes in these passages about not being anxious, what we meditate on, the peace of God, and being content in whatever state we find ourselves.
How do we do this? Paul shares it is through Christ who strengthens us.
“Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.”1 Timothy 6:6-8
We are called to be different than the world, not to seek after food and clothing, but to seek after the kingdom of God and his righteousness. In Christ, our priorities should change. Our identity is not in our fashion and what we have but in Christ and our trusting the Father to provide our needs.
As believers in Christ, we can pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and gentleness – see 1 Timothy 6:11.
Paul wrote to the rich to realize that God gives us all things to enjoy and admonishes them to share in what God has provided them. He urges the rich not to trust the uncertainty of riches.
Paul freely gave of himself. Jesus tells all who follow Him to take up the cross and follow him. Taking up our cross is not an optional calling for believers, but it is the core of what Christ has done for us. He freed us so that we may freely give.
In Hebrews, the writer says, “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”Hebrews 13:5
Knowing that our Father loves us and will provide for our needs is key. No matter what we go through, He will never leave or forsake us.
These teachings go against our nature. As humans, we work hard to advance ourselves and look out for our interests. We want to ensure we get the credit at work, and our feelings get hurt when ideas and efforts go unnoticed. We want recognition and want to promote ourselves. Jesus calls us to serve and love others – even at our own expense. Will you lay down your pride and ambition to exalt someone else?
Jesus came to put things right. He came to undo the power of sin over our lives. You and I can lay down our selfish ambition and know as we love and serve, we can have the confidence that God will take care of us.
How much do we trust Christ? Do we know that God will take care of us? How are you treating others? Are you pushing people aside to get ahead, or are you laying your life down knowing that God will take care of you? Life is not about what you can take for yourself.
Wherever you are, whatever God has given you, you can lay down selfish ambition, pride, etc., and serve the Lord, knowing that God will take care of you.
May the peace of God rule your hearts.