Content or Complacent?

Are you content or complacent?

Paul mentions in the Bible that he learned to be content in all circumstances (Phil 4:11-12) That is such a powerful place to be. You can take riches or poverty, little or plenty, and still praise God just the same. But Paul was not complacent. He traveled the known world preaching the Gospel to everyone in his path. He didn’t let the circumstances of life phase out what was his, and our ultimate calling… the movement of the Gospel.

Before you jump to saying you have reached contentment you have to ask if you are complacent. They are very similar, and even share a similar definition, but entirely different things.

Contentment is being satisfied with where God has you. Complacency is being satisfied with your current state but not seeking what is next. Essentially you can be content while in your journey and still move forward, but complacency stalls your journey. Contentment doesn’t nullify the call in our lives to be productive, fruitful people. It gives you perspective in your current situation while working towards your goals. Contentment has movement, complacency is stagnation.

It is not a sin to want and desire things, it is a sin when the things you want take the place of God and your desire for Him. God has a plan for your life, and that plan has movement. It starts at birth and by salvation moves you through life and into Heaven. As we grow we should gain responsibility, and the more we prove trustworthy, the more God entrusts us with. This could be relationships, possessions, etc.

* Disclaimer: He still gives and takes away based on His will alone. It is another antinomy. If you are faithful in the little things, you are given more. But, all is given and taken away based on God’s will. His sovereign will is the ultimate and final call.

We are called to movement.

For example, if I was still in 3rd grade at 28 and said I was content there you would think I was crazy right? Good! I would be. Or a real life Billy Madison. You should be content to be in 3rd grade, when you are in 3rd grade. But… there is a time to graduate and move on to the 4th grade. There is a season for everything under the sun. Be content in the season you are in, but always move forward despite it.

Self evaluation is imperative in achieving break through.

If you are stuck in a life stage you have to be honest with yourself and ask the Lord to search your heart. A holding pattern could just be a test of patience and waiting on the Lord, or it could be that He is withholding something because you have yet to pass a test. It may be that you need to take hold of something He is trying to teach you.

Psalm 139: 23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart. Test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there be any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

God has great things in store for you, but He is a loving Father. A Father who disciplines and corrects the ones He loves. He will not positively reinforce bad behavior, a poor attitude, or someone who blatantly disobeys. You will be placed in time out.

Be content in all circumstances, but ask God to search your heart. It may be that you have grown complacent and need Him to stir you up. We are creatures that easily grow complacent while claiming to be content.

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