Abased or Abounding, but Always Content

Helen Brownson

READ : Philippians 4:12-13

In Uganda several years ago we met many children who knew how to be abased and abound. They attended schools, walking long distances and paying high fees in order to receive an education. During school days they ate only one meal a day in order to pay their fees. They knew how to abound and how to be abased so that they could receive their schooling. They were content with ups and downs.

Many saints have experienced this. Isaac Watts was born amid persecution yet he became the Father of English hymns such as “Oh God, Our Help in Ages Past,” and “I Sing the Mighty Power of God.” William Borden of Yale was born into the abundance of a family fortune. When he heard Samuel Zwemer speak of his burden for the Islamic world he gave up everything to become a missionary. I remember Jack, a 47-year-old elder in our congregation, converted from a mixed-up past. He left a lucrative job to attend seminary and become “an eleventh hour laborer” as he put it.

Paul learned to be content in every situation. He affirms that he can endure all things through Christ who strengthens him. What a remarkable testimony!


Our Father, show us both how to be abased and to abound, to be content in every situation.