Saturday, March 28, 2015

Strength Through Contentment

Scripture Texts: Philippians 4; Psalm 3

One of the most commonly quoted passages among Christians is Philippians 4:13, I can do all things through Christ who give me strength. These words bring great encouragement when we are going through challenging times. At the same time it is important to look at the couple of verses before these words of encouragement.

Paul reminds the church and us, that he has learned how to be content in every situation. Whether he is in a time of plenty or a time of want, he knows how to be content with the circumstance he finds himself in. This is the backdrop of the statement that he can do all things through Christ who give him strength.

Is it possible there is a connection between finding strength in Christ and being content no matter the situation? Perhaps it is easier to connect with the strength of Christ when we are content because we stop striving in our own ability but rely on Christ. The declaration of Christ's strenght is as much about our ability to stop trusting our own strength and striving so that we are available to trust in Christ's strength.

Marriage goes through ups and downs. There are times of plenty and times of want. There are times when our relationship seems to be easy and requiring little effort and there are times with greater challenge and effort. In it all, however, can we learn to be like Paul and be content in our marriage in all circumstances? This does not mean that we are complacent in all circumstances, but that we are content, at peace with a deep trust in the power and ability of Christ in our marriage.

No matter what we face in marriage, or as individuals, we can be sure the words of Paul are true, we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. We can also be sure our ability to rest in that strength is tied to our ability to be content with the situations of our lives. It is not a promise everything will be easy and effortless. The promise is the strength of Christ will bring us through, and that is the reason to be content.

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