contentment 4

One of the questions I am asked the most is “how do you do it?” referring to my life with three (soon to be four) children in a forty foot fifth wheel. Although I usually only laugh and give a one or two sentence answer about how we enjoy our life together, I really could take an hour explaining how God has brought me to the place that I am content in the life He has given me.

Paul says in Phil 4:11 “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, [therewith] to be content.” Paul expresses that he has “learned… to be content” indicating that it took a process to teach him to be content. It was an encouragement to me the day that I realized that it was not only me that had to be taught to be content.

I have “learned” that contentment is composed of several elements. I could try to put them in a particular order of importance or in the order that I learned them, but I don’t really know if one element is of more value in the lesson than another.

1. Prayer. This is obvious. I can do nothing without God’s help, it isn’t in my fleshly nature to be content.

2. Thankfulness. If I am thankful for what God has given me, no matter how small the surroundings, it is difficult to be discontent. This seems simple, but it takes work to remain thankful. Phil 4:4, 6 says “Rejoice in the Lord alway: [and] again I say, Rejoice…. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” I am so thankful that God has called us into evangelism, and that He has chosen to allow me to serve Him.

3. I must control my thoughts. I think for me this is the biggest key to remaining content. I heard a preacher once say that ones thoughts dictate their emotions. HOW TRUE! If I think about what it is that I don’t have, then I can’t expect to be content with what I do have. In a verse prior to Paul stating that he had learned to be content, he tells us what it is that we should think on. For me I have to dwell on the positives of my life… my husband is home with us most of the time, our family is getting to see much of our beautiful country, I have friends in many different states, I get to see the results of our ministry in the salvation and decisions of others. I could (and have been guilty of) dwelling on the limitations of my life. I can’t even allow myself to think about how small my bedroom is or what decorations I can’t have or how few toys my children can have. I would be miserable and hurt my children and husband in the process.

4. I must realize that God knows and will supply my needs. Phil 4:19 “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” My precious Father knows me, he knows my thoughts, my desires and my needs. He will supply exactly what I need and if I rest in this knowledge, I will be content with what He gives me. The wonderful thing is that he not only supplies my needs, but often supplies my wants as well. God is good.

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4 thoughts on “contentment

  • Janet

    Robin, how true it is that we must learn to be content, no matter where the Lord has planted us!

    I remember when I was about your age, with three small children, I was stuck on a farm in the middle of nowhere. Our lane was nearly a mile long, so even getting the mail from the box at the end of the lane was a big production. I had no vehicle during the day, and could not leave to go anywhere. I have to admit, at times I was very discontented.

    However, God used that time in my live to teach me more about Himself. I learned that a young woman is expected to marry, bear children, and guide the house. I had not been raised in a Christian home, so this time of being stuck in an old farmhouse in the middle of nowhere was a wonderful time of growth for me, as a wife and a mommy.

    So, whether you are moving all over the country, or stuck in one spot, God is in control, and He is GOOD!

    Blessings to you as you continue to serve Him, where He is leading you.

    In Christ,

  • Nathan Clark George

    Hey Robin!

    I am visiting your blog for the first time, and this post caught my eye. As a fellow full-time RVer, I get this question a lot, too! You are right on in your assessment. It’s something I am constantly working on, too. Lately, though, I have been reflecting on how it really is a blessing to be forced to contain our children in a small space. It gives me no other option than to really know them and train them and enjoy them! Thanks for the post.


  • twofinches

    As a homeschooling mom I am also often asked how I do it…referring to my almost constant companionship of my ten year old twin sons and all the commitments I have in church and Voice of the Martyrs. But I think if God calls you He’ll stretch you!

    BTW I am a fellow blogger on blogspot. (Mine is called Contented Nest) I was searching around to see who else was writing about contentment today. There were a lot of us! I think in these economic times we all are being led to question what it is that brings us contentment. Paul was a great example for us!

    Bless you for writing honestly about your life in Him