"Having food and raiment let us be therewith content."
In today's modern economy we are trained to be discontent with what we have or do not have. We feel as if we need more and more stuff in order to be content. The apostle Paul was an itinerant preacher of the gospel to the Gentile communities of the Roman empire. He had to be on the road a lot, away from home, yet he found contentment in having very little, and was satisfied as long as he had food and clothing. This is a great lesson for us today. We need to train ourselves to find peace, joy, and happiness, even when we have very little. You see, contentment is really a state of mind and attitude that one adopts regardless of circumstances. Yes, when we lack basic necessities we will feel miserable; however, when we learn how to control our insatiable desire for more and more material goods, then we will find that we do not need to have 100 pairs of shoes, 5 cars, a TV in every room, the lastest gadgets, and the newest fashion fad to be happy. We instead need to learn how to find joy and happiness from within than from without. The joy which leads to contentment and happiness from within is lasting and real. The pleasure from material goods is temporary, and if we do not continue to fill our lives with new things, then our pleasure diminishes. That is why an economic depression is a depression. People get depressed when they cannot go out and spend money and buy a lot of things!
In this time of economic crisis many are forced to live on less. Some have adapted very well, and continue to enjoy their lives, in spite of having less money to spend. Others however have become depressed because of shattered dreams due to the weakening ability to purchase. Let me tell you something, I too had been disappointed in my lack of ability to purchase or build my dream house; but you know something, I have learned to be satisfied with what I have, and take pleasure in what I have. I have food, clothing, and shelter; that is more than millions of people around the world. I am thankful for what I have, and if God chooses to open that opportunity again for me to get that dream house, then I wait on that.