Thursday, February 19, 2009

A Contented Heart - Part 2

But Esau ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept. Genesis 33:4

It is refreshing to see Esau's change of heart when the two brothers meet again. the bitterness over losing his birthright and blessing(25:29-34) is gone. Instead, Esau is content with what he has. Jacob even exclaims how great it is to see his brother obviously pleased with him.

Life can deal us some bad situations. We can feel cheated, as Esau did, but we don't have to remain bitter. Bitterness can be removed from our lives by honestly confessing our feelings to God, forgiving those who have wronged us, and being content with what we have.


I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances. MARTHA WASHINGTON

Contentment is not found in having everything we think we want, but in being satisfied in everything God has provided. UNSURE


The heart that is constantly overflowing with gratiture will be safe from those attacks of resentfullness and gloom that bother so many persons. A.W. TOZER

A Contented Heart Series - Part 1

Over the past 2 1/2 years God has delt with me in many ways but none can compare to the issue of contentment. Today, I will begin a mini-series titled A Contented Heart. I will share how God has and still is teaching me to be content not only with what He provides, but in Him. He is all I need, He is enough. However, contentment is a constant struggle when the world says "you need more" or "you deserve it". The media is relentless. They don't want us to be content with what we have. But it didn't start with the media. It started in the Garden of Eden. In Genesis, we see Satan tries to ruin contentment.

Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God actually say, 'You shall not eat of any tree in the garden'?" And the woman said to the serpent, "We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, 'You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.'" But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths. And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man and said to him, "Where are you?" And he said, "I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself. Gen 3:1-10

But our God is faithful.

Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations... Deu 7:9

When discontent rears it's ugly head, I always find these verses encouraging.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Php 4:8

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. Php 4:11-13

to be continued...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

On My Heart This Morning

The LORD is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father's God, and I will exalt him.
Ex. 15:2
And he said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD."
Job 1:21

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Blog Title Explanation

I am a BIG Casting Crowns fan. I love their music because it is based on scripture and is most often an reflection of my own heart. Somewhere In The Middle is a song from their East to West cd. The lyrics describe the struggles between my heart's desire to serve the Lord and my selfishness. Oh, praise the Lord for the hope that we will not stay in our selfishness.

"Somewhere between the hot and the cold
Somewhere between the new and the old
Somewhere between who I am and who I used to be
Somewhere in the middle, You'll find me
Somewhere between the wrong and the right
Somewhere between the darkness and the light
Somewhere between who I was and who You're making me
Somewhere in the middle, You'll find me
Just how close can I get, Lord, to my surrender without losing all control
Fearless warriors in a picket fence, reckless abandon wrapped in common sense
Deep water faith in the shallow end and we are caught in the middle
With eyes wide open to the differences, the God we want and the God who is
But will we trade our dreams for His or are we caught in the middle
Are we caught in the middle
Somewhere between my heart and my hands
Somewhere between my faith and my plans
Somewhere between the safety of the boat and the crashing waves
Somewhere between a whisper and a roar
Somewhere between the altar and the door
Somewhere between contented peace and always wanting more
Somewhere in the middle You'll find me
Just how close can I get, Lord, to my surrender without losing all control
Lord, I feel You in this place and I know You're by my side
Loving me even on these nights when I'm caught in the middle."