“Being Content In The New Year”
• TOP 5 New Year’s Resolutions
The 5th was to take up a new hobby.
The 4th was to make more money.
The 3rd most popular resolution was to improve relationships.
The 2nd was to stop smoking.
The most popular New Years resolution, you guessed it, losing weight.
• Its all about being happy with who we are, how we look, what we do, where we live Being Content!
I. The Reason For Discontent (24)
A. “No man can serve two masters.”
B. Divided loyalties:
1. In Jesus’ day the picture would have been a slave trying to work for two different masters.
2. In our day it’s the Buffet Syndrome: We want a little bit of everything.
3. What that brings is not satisfaction but just the opposite, we aren’t satisfied with anything. (Example: Television watching, we’ve gone from 3 channels to 500 and still there is nothing worth watching).
C. God wants and deserves our full and total attention.
1. In our lives God has to compete with a lot of other things: He battles for our time, for our money, for our loyalty, for our attention.
Deuteronomy 6:5 (NASB95)
5 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
D. We have become so spoiled in this country, we so often want our cake and eat it too.
1. We want to follow Christ, but at the same time live like everyone else, have the same goals, same desires, chase after the same prize, but in the end we will be left just as empty as the rest of the world.
2. I love how James puts this concept, he never minces words.
James 4:4 (NIV)
4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.
E. “You cannot serve God and mammon.”
1. “Mammon” is a transliteration of the Greek word mamona which means “wealth or property.”
2. “Serve” has the idea of being continually controlled by something.
Ecclesiastes 5:10-11 (NASB95)
10 He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity. 11 When good things increase, those who consume them increase. So what is the advantage to their owners except to look on?
3. Even Solomon, the richest man who ever lived, saw that wealth and abundance was no source for contentment.
II. Being Content In God (25-32)
A. “Take no thought for your life,” literally what Jesus is saying is ‘Don’t worry about it.’
1. Someone did a study on the things we worry about: 60% of our fears are totally unfounded. 20% are already behind us. 10% are so petty they make no difference. 5% are real, but we cannot do anything about them. That leaves 5% we can actually have some influence over.
2. We worry when we loose our dependence on God and start depending on ourselves.
3. God promises to take care of our basic needs: food, clothes, shelter.
4. This principle was much more difficult for the people of Jesus’ day to live out agricultural economy.
Vv. 26, 28-30
B. God cares for all of His creation and provides for its every need how much more will God provide for His children.
Philippians 4:19 (NASB95)
19 And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
1. Worrying about things tells God either I don’t trust you or I don’t believe you, which is why Jesus calls them, “O ye of little faith.”
2. The one thing we know we can trust, the only thing we can count in is the Word of God and the truth that lies there in:
1 Peter 1:24-25 (NASB95)
24 For, “ALL FLESH IS LIKE GRASS, AND ALL ITS GLORY LIKE THE FLOWER OF GRASS. THE GRASS WITHERS, AND THE FLOWER FALLS OFF, 25 BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER.” And this is the word which was preached to you.
3. How often we trust each other.
And only doubt our Lord.
We take the word of mortals,
And yet distrust His word;
But, oh, what light and glory
Would shine o’er all our days,
If we always would remember
God means just what He says.
C. Anyway when was the last time the fact that you worried about something actually changed or helped anything?
D. Jesus’ plead is for us not to waste our time worrying, it could be perceived as a sign of unbelief, because our Heavenly Father knows what we need and He will provide.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NASB95)
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
1. Pray about everything, worry about nothing, and be content in God.
III. Being Content In Jesus Christ (33-34)
• 2 Things we must seek!
A. “But seek ye first the Kingdom of God.”
1. We must seek to enter God’s kingdom, His place of salvation and rest.
2. You cannot enter the kingdom until you know the king.
B. “His righteousness.”
1. This is how we live out our faith, our daily walk.
2. Seeking to put on the righteousness of Christ.
C. “seek” present tense verb, portrays a continual action, keep on seeking.
1. In other words don’t be satisfied when you find it, but keep on searching out its depths and its riches.
2. Then we experience the promise that “all these things will be added unto you.”
3. There is nothing wrong with having stuff, but are we using it to advance God’s Kingdom, to promote His righteousness; or our own?
Philippians 4:11-13 (NASB95)
11 Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
D. Don’t worry about tomorrow, it will take care of itself. Each day has enough to worry about.
1. Significance in their culture.
2. Trusting God each and every day, for all things and in all ways; that is how we become content with our lives.
Ecclesiastes 5:18-20 (NASB95)
18 Here is what I have seen to be good and fitting: to eat, to drink and enjoy oneself in all one’s labor in which he toils under the sun during the few years of his life which God has given him; for this is his reward. 19 Furthermore, as for every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, He has also empowered him to eat from them and to receive his reward and rejoice in his labor; this is the gift of God. 20 For he will not often consider the years of his life, because God keeps him occupied with the gladness of his heart.