8 Characteristics Incompatible with Christian Contentment

Christian contentment opposes despair. For the believer, there should never be a time when we believe there is no hope. God can always open the doors of heaven (2 Kings 7:2). In other words, just because we do not see a way out does not mean God’s hands are tied. There is no situation in the life of God’s child where he will fail to keep us. Even if we do not understand the affliction, he is doing greater things than we can ever imagine.

We may say we are fully content with God and that he is all we need, but we all wrestle with certain sinful attitudes and behaviors that communicate otherwise. They are characteristics incompatible with fulfillment in God, but there is hope. The more we grow in Christian contentment, the more these tendencies will lose their grip on us. To summarize Jeremiah Burroughs, here are eight things godly contentment opposes in our lives.

1. Murmuring and Complaining

When we see the people of God in the Old Testament complaining as they wander in the wilderness, it is because they are not content with God’s leadership. They have not found him to be enough and think they need more than he has provided to be satisfied. Christian contentment finds its complete satisfaction in God himself and is not compatible with murmuring and complaining.

2. Worry and Fret

Christian contentment and disordered anxiety are contradictory to each other. Anxiety is the result of not trusting the One who is in sovereign control of our lives. As Christians, we serve a God who has bought us with his blood and holds the whole world in his hands. He knows how to rescue the godly and bring them through the trials of this life to be with him forever. Christian contentment understands this and knows that any affliction allowed in their life by our sovereign God may appear to be dark clouds, but they are filled with deep mercy. This is why Scripture tells us to be anxious for nothing.

3. A Perplexed Spirit

We may be crushed but not perplexed. Whether providence has provided us with much or little, the believer does not need to run around confusedly. There is truth in the old cliché’, we do not need to know what tomorrow holds because we know who holds tomorrow. As we mature as Christians, it will become more and more evident how little we understand and can control our lives. But at the same time, we will trust more and more in the goodness of our heavenly Father.

4. Distraction from Obedience to God

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