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Dynamics of Life

There is a mirage in life bigger than the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and more enticing than the ‘water’ over hot pavement. It’s called satisfaction.

When we are having a great time, we never want it to end.

When we are eating great food, we never want to get full.

When we are resting well, we never want to get up.

When we see our youth fading, we never want it to go away.

When we are going through pain, we want it to end and never start again.

And so on…

Whatever our state, there is an urge to find satisfaction in the state or in the ending of that state:  If I only could make X thousand dollars more a year, I’d be satisfied.

As biological creatures, we live in a dynamic world filled with the needs of our senses, urges, and drives. As these cycle through their courses, we cycle through grief and celebration, need and plenty, feast and famine, mountain tops and valleys. This is normal, but unsatisfying—I’m full to bursting now, but I know in the near future I will again need to eat, so a great meal does not bring satisfaction.

There is a solution to the dilemma, a cure for the mirage. It is called contentment.

Contentment arises when we step outside of our biological self enough to recognize the constant change that is in life and learn to accept and appreciate the different phases as they come, enjoying them fully without holding on to them in the fear of losing it. Because this too shall pass, we hold on to the memories and blessings a phase brings and let them give strength, nourishment and encouragement to do the same for the next stage.

True satisfaction is unlikely or rare in this world. However, contentment is a choice we make moment by moment. It is easier to make this choice when we see this life in the fullness of its transience, as the Lord does, rather than from the perspective of a mere creature who only knows the physical world around it.

We were created for contentment, and it is in Christ that we are given the wisdom to embrace it consistently. He is the object of our hearts’ longing and therefore the source of true satisfaction. Once that is found and firmly established in one’s life, then contentment can be as natural as breathing.

When we look for satisfaction in anything other than Christ, we ultimately find disappointment, because those things were created for our enjoyment, not our satisfaction. When we place expectation on anyone or anything beyond that for which it was designed, disappointment is inevitable because failure will occur.

Thus did Christ declare when he spoke thus, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these other things will be given also” {in their proper place and balance}. (Matthew 6:33)

A body without a skeleton is shapeless. Even though some tissues have more firmness than others, we cannot expect them to support the rest, nor can it do productive motion more than quiver in place. In the same way, Christ is the skeleton of our satisfaction, the anchor that gives shape and puts limits on the motion of our muscles and tissues, but also gives them a foundation, direction, and support to push against, empowering us to be dynamic in a productive way. When the various parts of our lives are anchored properly to Christ, our satisfaction, then we are free to move in and with contentment.


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