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As I write this devotion, I realize that over the years I have written much about living a contented life. For many, this is hard to do, because we live in a society where we sometimes compare ourselves to others. We are quite competitive and the more we have, the more we want. If we have learned anything from this year’s experiences with Coronavirus, it is how to appreciate the little that God has blessed us with. I hope that we have all learned what it means to appreciate whatever God has given to us: not to be envious or jealous over another’s blessings. For some, that is a hard lesson and for others, it will never be learned. But, oh, the peace that comes when one finds true contentment. Today’s devotion speaks of contentment and is found in Philippians 4:11.

“Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have.”

The Apostle Paul shares with his fellow believers, a personal testimony that his experiences have taught him the lessons of contentment. He knows what it is to be in want, and he knows the blessings of being favored. He says in all circumstances, he has learned the secret. Do not miss the word, secret. God has revealed the blessings of contentment to Paul. Paul has experienced hunger and abundance; the ups and downs of life that have taught him to be content. Paul does not complain but acknowledges that God’s power has sustained him. He also says that he can do all things through Christ who strengthens him. What a powerful testimony! I close this devotion with this thought in mind: no one will ever experience the secret of contentment without some hard experiences. It is amazing how much we can learn through our trials and troubles. We can learn to appreciate the little. Sometimes the only way to truly come to grips with contentment is to go through some stuff. I wish I could say that we could learn that secret without having to go through the test. But, as my grandmother would say, “You never miss the water until the well goes dry.”