Settled but Not Settling

Read time: 2 minutes

“Happiness.” Now there goes an interesting word. It almost seems abstract – elusive even. It’s as though it constantly lives beyond the reach of all of those who would dare to pursue it.

How often have we tricked ourselves into believing that we will finally be happy when (fill in the blank) comes to pass? Well, before you spend months or years waiting for happiness to find you, I’m going to be a good friend and go ahead and let you know that that’s not how it works. Happiness – which could also be called contentment – isn’t a place that we arrive at once certain events have transpired. In fact, contentment is a choice.

In his letter to the church at Philippi, the Apostle Paul urged the Christians there not to make space for anxiety but to instead “make [their] requests known unto God” through prayer (Philippians 4:6). Simply communicating our every desire to God doesn’t guarantee that He will grant each one but by communicating them to Him, we transfer the burden from ourselves over to Him and in exchange we receive His peace. Peace that doesn’t even make sense.

Further down in the chapter, in verses 10 thru 13, Paul shares with us about how challenges and hardship have taught him how to survive any situation, both physically and mentally. It’s one thing to endure a season of lack or difficulty and maintain your physical well-being but to come out of it still having the joy that you had when you went into it? Now that’s a different kind of victory. Paul looked at his circumstances and he CHOSE contentment.

Now please hear me when I say this: choosing contentment does not mean that we have to choose complacency. It is possible to fully appreciate where God has us while simultaneously pursuing what He has in store for us. We can be happy now while still being excited about what will come next. Do not wait until you arrive at your next destination to choose happiness because when you get there, you will find something else to chase after and you will delay it yet again. Talk about a hamster on a wheel. Happiness doesn’t have to be elusive.

Choose to be settled in your spirit, accepting and being at peace with your current circumstances, but don’t settle there. Continue to strive to do better and to be better and to go higher, moving away from God’s provision and permissive will and into His promises and His perfect will. He has more for you both in the natural and in the spiritual but until you reach that place, allow your spirit to be settled and anxiety to be dismissed. Choose contentment.

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