Read: Philippians 4:10-13
I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (vv. 12-13)
Living within our means is a good practice, but this discipline can be challenging if we’re accustomed to buying and enjoying nice things. In that case an injury or a family emergency can instantly change our circumstances and propel us into an unwelcome reality, forcing us to adjust our spending habits. When our now limited funds barely cover life’s essentials, we feel powerless, discouraged, and discontented. We long to return to the lifestyle we once knew.
Paul tells us to be content, whatever our situation. His satisfaction in life did not depend on people or things, so he can maintain this positive perspective even while he is writing this letter to the Philippians from jail. He is grateful for the help his brothers and sisters in Christ are sending him, but he can’t even allow church support to overshadow his true source of provision. Paul credits God for everything (Phil. 4:19), and he relies on God’s strength to carry him through every situation.
When we’re dissatisfied with life, overwhelmed by limitations, or suffering through hardship, people and things will offer us only temporary satisfaction. Let’s recognize that everything we possess and everything we enjoy comes from God: our true source of contentment. He is all we need in any situation. —Ericka Loynes
Prayer: Lord, regardless of circumstances, teach us how to be content.