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How to Be Content

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There’s a secret that changes everything. If you get a handle on this single idea, it will transform your approach to money, relationships and even faith. You’ll never be the same.

That secret is called contentment.

The power of contentment frees you from the gravitational pull of stuff. It lessens your need to compare yourself to others. It releases you from a lot of the stress and worry that bog you down.

And the really cool thing is, contentment isn’t some mystical force that’s difficult to understand. You know it when you see it in the lives of others. Do you have contentment built into your DNA? You can.

In fact, here are five questions you can ask yourself right now to find out how content you really are—and how you can grow in becoming more content.

1. Am I letting my circumstances define how I feel?

There’s a difference between happiness and contentment. Happiness begins on the outside and moves in, while contentment begins on the inside and shines out. While happiness depends on the moment, contentment has a rock-solid foundation that stands through any storm.

2. Am I careful about guarding my heart?

Proverbs 4:23 (NIV) says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” When we fail to effectively guard our hearts, discontentment creeps in and creates feelings like jealousy, envy and entitlement. In a world full of “perfect” images and lifestyles portrayed on social media, guarding your heart is now more important than ever.

3. Am I a slow cooker or a microwave?

We live in a microwave society, but God often puts us into slow-cooker situations that require a little bit of patience and a whole lot of faith. During those seasons, we have to let God work in His timing. Waiting is never easy, but contentment makes it possible.

4. Am I grateful?

Contentment doesn’t come naturally, so we need help fighting the urge to feel entitled or discontent. Gratitude is the cure for the things that rob our contentment. When we’re grateful, we keep the focus on God and not ourselves. That makes it easier to remember who we are and what we’re about.

5. Am I focused on trusting God or collecting more stuff?

A content spirit understands true meaning and purpose are rooted in a personal relationship with Jesus. In contrast, trying to find your worth in the stuff you own—or don’t own—always leaves you feeling empty.

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The apostle Paul said, “Godliness with contentment is great gain” (1 Timothy 6:6 NIV). In other words, doing the right thing (godliness) with the right spirit (contentment) produces God’s work in your life. It probably won’t change your bank account overnight or that family member who needs an attitude adjustment. But it can—and will—change you.

And that changes everything.

Learn to live in the freedom God created you for—to grow, serve, and follow His call. Find out how Financial Peace ChurchWide can impact your life and the lives of everyone around you.