Secret of Contentment
I want you to open your Bibles again tonight to the letter to the Philippians, chapter 4, and I want to read verses 10 through 13:
But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. (He is referring to the gift that they sent to Paul by Epaphroditus.) Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
Now, Americans especially, are intoxicated by the word secret. Our ears really perk up when somebody says, I have a secret I want to share with you. Of course, you know what a secret is? It is something you tell everybody, one person at a time. The advertising world and the media world capitalize on this. All the tabloids at the grocery store checkout are advertising or proclaiming some secret--the secret diet of the stars or a secret pill that will cure cancer. Of course, I never would buy one of those things, you understand. But I do read pretty quickly while I'm in the checkout line. And I've heard sermons on the secret of power, the secret of prayer, and the secret of building a great church. It has been overused and abused so I never use the word secret in the titles of my sermons—except tonight, because Paul used it. He said, I have learned the secret, to be content whatever my circumstances.
I want to speak to you tonight on this subject, The Secret of Contentment. Contentment is a very interesting word. It means to be satisfied, to be at peace with your self. I think one of the characteristic marks of our day is the discontent of people. Of course, discontent goes ...
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