Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Harden Not Your Heart...

"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances."

I have a cover photo that I use frequently on facebook. I'm probably hinging on copyright infringement, because I totally stole it off of google images (if you created it, thank you! I'll give you credit!)

And y'all.

This is what I want to do.

I want to choose happy.

I want to learn to be content, just as Paul says.

So this is my quest for contentment. Day 2 I woke up thinking I hated my life... and I know that's no coincidence, because anything we do for God's glory we've got an enemy trying to convince us it's impossible.

But that verse I quoted above?

The rest of the chapter... just one verse over, actually, says that I can do all things through Christ.

Christ in me is powerful enough to allow me to do what otherwise would be impossible.

Without Christ,  though, my flesh is pretty powerful... when I allow it to be.

It can be pretty bossy.

That's why seeking His kingdom first is so important.

What goes in comes out, so the more I have God's Word in me, the more I see His Work around me, and the more I'm able to just be...

not striving.

Not making my own mess.

Just content.

It's a choice, really, what we focus on...

So if I know this, why does it seem so hard? Why is it a lesson I have to learn time and time again?

Why can't I just be satisfied with things the way they are?

Because we were meant for more...

Not more stuff.

Not more accolades...

Not more prestige or clothing or books or fame.

Nope... we were made for more glory. He's continually working within us, to make us more like Christ.

But that process of becoming more like Christ is full of sacrifices. Putting others before us. Loving when we don't feel like loving. Giving when we are scared to give.

And it takes away a lot of our control... and we humans tend to have some control issues.

(Well, most of us. If you don't, well, kudos to you!)

So, in our endless effort to maintain control and try to find satisfaction without completely surrendering, we make a big mess a lot of the time...

Which just leaves us ending up more discontent.

And the more discontent we are, the more we allow our hearts to harden.

Hardened against our neighbors, our friends, our loved ones...

and yes.

Hardened against God.

The word hardened in the New Testament comes from the Greek word poroo, which means "to become calloused, covered with a thick skin, to lose the power to understand."

How interesting that one of the definitions of content (as a noun) is "that which may be perceived as something."

Being able to perceive means to be able to discern or understand...

So, when we allow our hearts to be  hardened, we lose the ability to perceive or understand...

We become focused on all of the bad and lose sight of all of the good...

an endless cycle of discontentment.

And really, the hardening of our heart is a choice.

It's choosing to look at all we don't have rather than considering all we do.

It's holding that grudge.

It's nursing that wound.

To be content, I must allow my heart to soften.  That's scary. That means I'm vulnerable...

but it'll be worth it.

Join me this month as I write on what the Word is telling me about finding contentment. You can find all my posts here.


  1. Yes, so true. Choose joy and contentment with what we have, not focused on what we don't have.

  2. It's all about choices! Choosing to be content in all situations. Choosing not to worry about anything, instead trusting Him for everything! Choosing obedience "Fear Not!" s He's instructed 365 times--once for each day of the Sun calendar the pagan Roman's set up, but God knew would be--in His Holy, Living Word! This is a great post! I look forward to reading more! :) Blessings!