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Contentment Lyes in a Deep Affection

Proverbs   •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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CONTENTMENT Internal satisfaction which does not demand changes in external circumstances.

Freedom doesn’t bring contentment

Story of me having freedom going up to Publix

1. Many things falsely promise contentment

300 Quotations for Preachers from the Puritans Outward Things Do Not Keep the Soul at Peace

If the soul itself be out of tune, outward things will do no more good than a fair shoe to a gouty foot.

Contentment is something that is hard to obtain, and we have all done things that we thought was going to cause us to be content, but it inevitably fell short.
There is a hole in the heart of man, and we are constantly trying to fill it up with anything that we think will finally make our hearts satisfied.
The king of false contentment is St. Augustine, he tried everything and eventually wrote that his heart was restless until he found his rest in God.
Proverbs 15:16 ESV
Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble with it.

Money doesn’t bring contentment

Proverbs 15:16 ESV
Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble with it.
define fear of the Lord
The philosopher Notorious B.I.G. said it right “mo money mo problems”
I would rather have lower wealth, than higher wealth with a plethora of problems.
Solomon was possibly the richest person who has ever lived, and he had great wisdom about money...
Ecclesiastes 5:10 ESV
He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity.
It is vanity to search after wealth when you go to it to satisfy the longing of your heart.
It doesn't satisfy you because it was never meant to and because it seems to disappear.
Think of all of the famous people who have this problem.
NFL players going bankrupt or famous artists wasting away their money
This happens because money seems to just fly away.
-Money often seems to disappear, as soon as we get it, if we are not careful, it just goes.
Proverbs 23:4–5 ESV
Do not toil to acquire wealth; be discerning enough to desist. When your eyes light on it, it is gone, for suddenly it sprouts wings, flying like an eagle toward heaven.
Jesus has something to say In Luke 12 about looking to wealth to find our contentment.

The Parable of the Rich Fool

13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” 14 But he said to him, “Man, who made me a judge or arbitrator over you?” 15 And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” 16 And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, 17 and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ 18 And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.” ’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21 So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”

Be on guard against covetousness
Man is not known for the abundance of his possessions
Even if we could be satisfied like the man in V19 he can’t take it with him, so his satisfaction wasn’t lasting satisfaction
Try to take your abundant wealth with you when you die, it doesn't work
Our goal in life should be above all to be rich toward God. If you toil for wealth more than you toil to be rich toward God, we have a problem, and we will address that in a minute.
Piggy backing off of money, is envy.

Envy doesn't bring contentment

Piggy backing off of money, is envy. When ever we long for something that someone else has it is decaying to our very being.
Proverbs 14:30 ESV
A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot.

Peace is priceless
There is nothing like a tranquil heart, it just feels so good to have peace
yet for many of us we forgo a thankful heart for want of the stuff that our neighbors have...
Car
house
job
successful kids
trophy wife
hansom husband
social status
These things were not God’s gift to us, and sometimes what we think is a gift in someone else's life is actually a curse for them.
That successful job may be so demanding that it is ruining family relationships, but all you see is the facebook posts which are fresh paint on a wood rotten house.

Hatred doesn't bring Contentment

Proverbs 15:17 ESV
Better is a dinner of herbs where love is than a fattened ox and hatred with it.
ps 15
It is so interesting to me that this verse talks about something so relational which is having dinner with someone. The dinner could be exquisite, but if there is not love, then the finest foods taste like gravel in our mouthes.
There is something so unique to the heart of humanity and the design that God had for us because we were made for relationship, if our relationships are sour, then there is no use in trying to numb out by consuming things that we think will bring us pleasure.
When hatred is in full bloom it leads to injustice… This is something we have been seeing so much as of late, and there is one thing I find fascinating… No one who is promoting injustice looks like they are content in life.

Injustice doesn't bring contentment

pr 1
Proverbs 16:8 ESV
Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues with injustice.
Injustice doesn't bring contentment because injustice is an abuse of power, and no amount of power could ever satisfy, that is why we see so many kings who go crazy… they thought the power was going to satisfy their hearts, but they are just as empty now as they were before they came into power, so they do even crazier things to try and fulfill their hearts in ways that it was never ment to be fulfilled.
Injustice is fueled by an inner sense of self hate, that projects that hatred onto others.
Jesus can deal with self hate and in turn deal with the injustice that one could cause, healing comes only through the king who suffered the ultimate injustice that the world has ever known.

Freedom doesn’t bring contentment

Story of me having freedom going up to Publix

Overconsumption doesn't bring contentment

Proverbs 25:16 ESV
If you have found honey, eat only enough for you, lest you have your fill of it and vomit it.
There have been a great many days down at the local 4rivers where I have found this out
Being greedy for life is never the option that will lead to contentment
We are in essence trying to physically fill the whole in our heart that only Jesus can fill
How do we over-consume today?
Netflix (big one for us)
Food (big one for me)
Alchohol
Simple distractions... read tony Reinke’s book “12 ways your phone is changing you”
All of these point to an idol of comfort, and they will never lead your soul to Contentment, because we will always want to consume more and more, its the way that we are trained in our culture.
If you don’t think your culture is discipling you, then you are fooled, which is why we need to do what Jesus said and be on our guard against all covetousness.
All of these things are outward, they are trying to put a bandaid on a major laceration.
How can we truly heal our wounds, and stop fooling about with things that we think will bring us contentment only to leave us empty and thrust us deeper into the search for satisfaction?
Richard Sibbs says...
300 Quotations for Preachers from the Puritans Outward Things Do Not Keep the Soul at Peace

If the soul itself be out of tune, outward things will do no more good than a fair shoe to a gouty foot.

How do we get our soul back in tune? Jesus must wash us.
Turning point to satisfaction in God being what makes us contentment
I hope you noticed the title of todays sermon
Sodium Hydroxide AKA Lye is the main cleansing ingredient in soap
Jesus is the only one who can wash us of our desire to be content in overconsumption, injustice, hatred, envy, and money. Jesus can wash us of those things that could never satisfy, and he can renew or desires for contentment in the only person who CAN satisfy, himself…
Jesus washes us of the external satisfaction that we desire and replaces it with internal contentment in Him. He does this by renewing in us what the bible calls the “fear of the Lord”

2. Contentment is found in the fear of the Lord

Pr
Proverbs 19:23 ESV
The fear of the Lord leads to life, and whoever has it rests satisfied; he will not be visited by harm.
This is how I would define fear of the Lord...
Easton’s Bible Dictionary Fear of the Lord The

It is a fear conjoined with love and hope, and is therefore not a slavish dread, but rather filial reverence.

Define fear of the Lord
Fear of the Lord is having a fear like a child would for their father
God’s fatherly affection for us, draws our hearts to long for him. The good news is that he wants to give himself to us!
In his presence we will actually be content with our lives because we see God as the giver of all gifts, and we trust his wisdom to give us exactly what we need exactly when we need it.

3. How can we practice God given contentment?

Philippians 4:11–13 ESV
Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
1. We practice God given contentment by focusing on His son, who strengthens us.
Psalm 17:15 ESV
As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness.
Is our focus on the low parts of life, or the high parts of life, or is it focused on the one who strengthens us?
Focusing on Christ helps us to grow in our fear of the Lord because Christ is the incarnation of the love of God, and he is our hope.
This should lead us to a deeper awe of God, and a more concrete understanding that we are His children.
Colossians 1:11–12 ESV
being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy; giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.
2. We practice God given contentment by giving thanks to God for His good gifts, especially for qualifying us so that we can be in his all satisfying presence forevermore.
Do you want to be content in this life? Fall in love with Jesus, he will satisfy your heart in ways that earthly pleasures never could. So lets all practice this contentment by having thankful hearts and an awe that through the work of Christ, God is now our our loving father.
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