Desire, Discontentment & Affluenza

Pastor Carter spoke on discontentment the other day. He hit on a key issue for many people who grew up in the land of plenty. I can relate. One reason that I stopped having cable TV was that I was tired of always being told what I needed. The latest kitchen gadget never brings eternal happiness like the guy in the infomercial said.

Affluence has made us a people known for our appetites. The problem is that desire can breed discontentment where nothing is every good enough. Left unchecked, this attitude can cause us to become nothing more than appetite. Satan loves to keep us chasing the next thing. All it leads to is ever increasing appetite and constantly decreasing satisfaction.

Dissatisfaction can be a good motivating force. The real question is, “What we are seeking, is it a God thing or a me thing?”

Pastor Carter said, “Your sin creates your theology.” He gave the example of a disgruntle employee who steals two hours a day playing Solitare because he doesn’t feel he is paid enough. This person is seeking to get justice as he defines it. The person is discontent he then seeks to make things right by taking a little extra time off during the work day. This is just one example where discontentment creates a situation where a person sins to counteract the perceived injustice.

How can we know if we are discontent? Pastor Carter challenged the fellowship to look at their words. Do you talk about something or someone as if you are never satisfied and things are always bad? Do you look around and always want what the other person has? You may have caught the discontentment bug. A jealous strain of affluenza tends to be the cause.

When we are discontent, we are in essence saying to God, “What you have given me is not enough. You aren’t doing your job right.” While we are free to be honest with God about our feelings, we must remember that murmuring is not the answer. As a Christian, we have to come to the point that we realize we have signed away our rights. We are bound to God’s direction and will.

Christians should take a lesson from the Apostle Paul. He wrote, “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”

Have you had enough?

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