Most of us base our contentment on our circumstances, on our feelings, or on other people. However, true contentment is separate from our circumstances. Contentment is a state of the heart, not a state of affairs. – Linda Dillow
I’m doing an excellent Biblestudy called “Calm My Anxious Heart” by Linda Dillow that focuses on cultivating contentment no matter what your circumstances. In the first chapter, Dillow tells of a missionary to Papua New Guinea who lived in primitive conditions. The missionary’s daughter (Dillow’s friend) wondered how her mother had managed to be so gracious and content in the midst of 120+ degree heat in a hut with no air conditioning or fans and with all sorts of other deprivation, and she found a list in her mother’s papers of resolutions for contentment:
- Never allow yourself to complain about anything, not even the weather.
- Never picture yourself in any other circumstances or someplace else.
- Never compare your lot with another’s.
- Never allow yourself to wish this or that had been otherwise.
- Never dwell on tomorrow – remember that tomorrow is God’s, not ours.
So far this study has been tremendously convicting, but also inspiring. It’s actually a book with study questions appended, so I’ll review it further after I’ve finished it. If you’re in the Indianapolis area, it’s available through the IMCPL, but I am getting so much out of it I might actually (gasp!) purchase my own copy!