Do you remember when Band-Aids were miraculous? When you place a Band-Aid on a preschoolers boo boo, miraculously tears disappear, pain evaporates and the scraped knee is all but forgotten. And if you add a dinosaur, princess or cartoon image on the Band-Aid, the child might actually produce a precious smile. Tragedy has passed and contentment reigns as they run off to the next adventure. But you and I know the scrape is still there; the Band-Aid just covered it up.
Sadly, as we get older, Band-Aids lose their power to bring contentment in the midst of difficulties. For a preschooler it’s a scraped knee for you it might be financial, physical or relationship difficulties. These are things Band-Aids just won’t fix.
So as Christians we pray- we pray for a solution to the problem because we know Jesus is big enough to solve any problem. And He is but here’s another idea. What if we prayed for contentment? What if we prayed to be content in every circumstance? Does that sound ridiculous? How can you be content when things are lousy? The Apostle Paul figured it out. In Philippians 4:11 he said “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. “ And let me tell you this guy had some circumstances. He was beaten, shipwrecked, imprisoned, chased by a mob and unjustly accused and that’s just to name a few. So if he was content in those situations, does that mean he was apathetic and lost his desire to improve things? No, Paul was a HUGE believer in changing the world through the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then how can you be content when things are lousy? In verse 12-13 Paul tells his secret for contentment: “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.”
Paul’s Band-Aid was the strength of Christ. If you know enduring ANYTHING comes from His strength and not your own, you can find contentment. Because He will not run out of strength and He will not run out on you. Have you ever had a difficulty where the answer to prayer has not been a solution? Your child still has a learning disability, your mother still needs a walker, your sister still has a nicer house or your spouse still deserves a raise? What then? Do you pray for Jesus to give you the strength to be content in your circumstance? Unfortunately, I usually don’t. I usually repeatedly share my discontentment with the Lord without asking for the one thing I need the most- the strength to cling to His peace.
We all have scrapes that have left pockets of discontentment in our lives. Don’t leave your wound open to fester. Let Jesus cover it with His strength so you may have contentment- it’s even better than a Band-Aid.