How would you respond if you lost everything–all the things you own, your friends, family and even your health, similar to what Job went through? If you lost everything, would God be enough for you?
Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me (Philippians 4:11-13).
Philippians 4:13 is one of the most misunderstood verses in the Bible. Many people use it to say that as long as they love and trust God, anything they try will be successful–but that isn’t Paul’s meaning. We can see Paul’s meaning from verses 11 and 12, when he talks about all the different circumstances he’s experienced. Paul says he knows what it’s like to live poor and to live prosperous, to be hungry and to be full, to have abundance and to be needy. Paul is talking about contentment.
Paul is telling us that his circumstances don’t matter so much because he is completely content with God. When he says he can “do all things,” it might be more accurate to our understanding to say, “I can survive any circumstance through Him who strengthens me,” because that’s what it means. When we are content with God, our circumstances don’t bother us quite so much.
Honestly, I’m not sure that I can say this for myself. If I lost everything, I think I’d have trouble being confident that my relationship with God was enough. Maybe that’s okay, though; maybe the point is to deepen our relationship with God a little more with each circumstance we encounter until eventually we can say, like Paul, that we’re “content in whatever circumstances we’re in.”
Girls, what do you think? Is God enough for you to be content in any circumstance?
Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13).
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