“Christian contentment is that sweet, inward, quiet, gracious frame of spirit, which freely submits to and delights in God’s wise and fatherly disposal in every condition.”

A priceless quote from Jeremiah Burroughs. His book, “Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment” is filled with gems.

He reminds us that only God can satisfy us. We must subtract from our desires in order to make them equal with our circumstances. Subtract from our desires? Not necessarily an easy task, but the road to contentment. If our desires are too many, and too grand, we will never find contentment in where we are. “A Christian comes to contentment, not so much by way of addition, as by way of subtraction.”

“The Lord has been pleased to bring down my circumstances; now if the Lord brings down my heart and makes it equal to my circumstances, then I am well enough.” Take time to read that quote again. Our Lord’s hand is what has brought down our circumstances. It is often necessary for him to bring down our hearts, our desires, our will, in order to bring us to balance with what He has chosen for us. “Here lies the bottom and root of all contentment, when there is an evenness and proportion between our hearts and our circumstances.”

Trying times can shake us, but a content Christian does not change due to his circumstances.  …”though their circumstances are changed, yet that nobody could see them changed…” Such a Christian filled with contentment in His Lord carries the same disposition, the sweet blending of joy and peace whether in times of quiet or turmoil. You wouldn’t be able to tell of which he is experiencing. They are the same! Oh, to be that drenched in contentment.

We must know that, “The hand of God is good – it is good that I am afflicted.”…”Not only do I see that I should be content in this affliction, but I see that there is good in it.” Our lives are from His hand, therefore, it is good.

Have you ever noticed how afflictions seem to come quickly stacked? One after another? The author addresses this as he states, “It is very rarely that one affliction comes alone; commonly, afflictions are not single things, but they come one upon the neck of another…one affliction seldom comes alone. Now this is hard, when one affliction follows after another, when there is a variety of afflictions, when there is a mighty change in one’s condition, up and down, this way, and that: there indeed is the trial of a Christian. Now there must be submission to God’s disposal in them.”

“But grace teaches such a mixture, teaches us how to make a mixture of sorrow and a mixture of joy together; and that makes contentment, the mingling of joy and sorrow, of gracious joy and gracious sorrow together. Grace teaches us how to moderate and to order an affliction so that there shall be a sense of it, and yet for all that contentment under it.”

Contentment is a mystery, being fully aware of my afflictions, desiring to be delivered from them, and yet still my heart remains content. This is a mystery that only God’s grace can solve.