If I just had this. Or if I didn’t have that. Or if this person would only act right. Then I’d be content.
Or so we fool ourselves. This book by Stephen Altrogge helps us recalibrate our happiness meter. I reviewed it here two years ago after tornadoes ripped through nearby neighborhoods. That helped put things into perspective too!
: : :
Excerpt from The Greener Grass Conspiracy
The truth is, biblical contentment can’t be learned unless something else is unlearned.
Contentment can’t be put on without first ripping something else out. The only way to grow in contentment is to undergo the process of identifying and destroying the idols in our lives. This always hurts, but the results are wonderful.
The world would have us believe that our discontentment is a circumstances problem.
Given the right set of circumstances, people could be happy everywhere and all the time. And these perennially happy people actually do exist. In beer commercials. Every such commercial seems to feature a group of twenty-somethings sitting around a campfire, tossing their heads back in unrestrained laughter, and knocking back a few cold ones. These folks obviously don’t have a care in the world, and if you drank lite beer on a regular basis you wouldn’t either. Or so the commercials would have us believe.
But the beer commercials are a pack of barley-smelling liars. Our problem isn’t a circumstances problem—it’s a worship problem.
You and I are all worshipers. Everyone is a worshiper. Worship is wired into our DNA. It’s what God created us to do.
In Isaiah 43:6-7 we read, “I will say to the north, Give up, and to the south, Do not withhold; bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the end of the earth, everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.”
God put you and me on Planet Earth so that we would worship him and give him glory. That is the fundamental reason that we exist. We exist to worship.
Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37).
Worship isn’t limited to singing praise choruses on Sunday morning. Worship is loving God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength all the time.
– Stephen Altrogge
: : :
Another great book on contentment is The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment by Jeremiah Burroughs. (I’m running out of days in October to tell you about all my favorite books.)
- Attitudes about pain
- I am with you