Being Content God calls us to live within our means and
be generous towards others.
take a moment to imagine the perfect day. Are you sunbathing in the Caribbean? Or spending time with relatives who live far away?
Now, imagine the perfect life. What would it take for
you to feel happy, peaceful and content?
We can all imagine how our lives could be more carefree. If we are honest, many of the first answers that come
to mind are more materialistic than
It’s sad how many of us are perpetually discontented with our lives.
A generation ago people spoke about
keeping up with the Joneses. Now, we
are Keeping Up with the Kardashians.
In our media-infiltrated world, we are
bombarded with advertising – both
subtle and overt – that seeks to sell us
an enhanced identity or lifestyle.
It can be easy to fall into the trap of
constantly wanting more. As the CBC’s Kevin O’Leary, a
self-proclaimed billionaire, is famous for saying, “I have
one objective: I want to go to bed richer than when I woke
But when will “more” ever be enough? We begrudge
the incredible blessings God has already poured out on us.
(Check out Ephesians 1 for some of His awesome gifts.)
We harbour discontent because we don’t have as many
possessions or opportunities as our neighbour, sister or
the latest tabloid celebrity.
This discontent not only affects our lives, but also our
closest relationships. Finances are one of the main sources
of conflict for many couples, often fuelled by the stress of
debt. Christian finance expert Larry Burkett once said, “Of
the couples who end up getting a divorce, every survey
shows between 85-90 per cent of them say that the number
one problem they were having was finances.”
Most couples don’t want to admit to trouble in this
area, but avoiding poor financial habits doesn’t make them
At times discontent is rooted in our desires. Other times,
and often the heart of the issue, is rooted in fear. The Bible
offers much wisdom – reportedly more than 2,000 verses
– about money. We should be stewarding the resources of
God and not hoarding wealth out of pride or fear.
Of course, Christian families just like any other families can struggle financially and find themselves in need,
often for long seasons. My mother recalls when her father – a street evangelist and custodian – would pray for
God’s provision to fill their completely bare cupboards.
God provided more than once by prompting unknowing
neighbours or church family to leave bags of groceries on
Truly God recognizes our need for food, shelter and
clothing – although sometimes we need the eyes of faith
to see it.
More often than not, however, our eyes get caught up
in the extras, seeing them as things we need and deserve
rather than things we merely want.
God calls us to live within our
means and to be generous towards
others. It’s possible to do one without
the other, to spend on ourselves while
leaving out tithes or gifts to people in
1 Timothy 6: 17-19 addresses this
issue. “Command those who are rich
. . . to be rich in good deeds, and to be
generous and willing to share. In this
way they will lay up treasure for them-
selves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they
may take hold of the life that is truly life.”
Therefore, as we consider our own needs, let’s be quick
to look to the needs of others rather than to selfish ex-
When we put our trust in money rather than in God,
there will never be enough. We will always be striving to
make more and build our personal kingdoms. Instead,
as Hebrews 13: 5 exhorts us, “Keep your lives free from
the love of money and be content with what you have,
because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will
I forsake you.’ ”
Everything we have – our money, our possessions, our
very breath – is not our own. These are lavish gifts from
our Great Provider. For a short while here on Earth, He
has entrusted us with them. As women alive in Christ,
may we use God’s gifts for His glory and not our own. Ft
A generation ago
people spoke about
keeping up with the
Joneses. now, we are
Keeping Up with
MIChEllE ARthuR is thankful for the spiritual and
financial wisdom her parents imparted. one of her
mom’s best tips is, “If you see something for full price,
wait two weeks. You’ll find out whether you still like it,
and it will probably go on sale!” Find more of these
columns by the executive director of women Alive