August 10, 2019


1 Timothy 6:6-10

Godliness with contentment is great gain.

—  1 Timothy 6:6

In a surprising program on HGTV, people go looking for tiny homes. They don’t want an enormous monthly mortgage payment, and they don’t want to accumulate all kinds of unnecessary junk in their lives. So they look at 200-squarefoot homes instead of 2,000 square-footers. Some of these have a master bedroom you crawl into under the rafters, a children’s bedroom under the other end of the roof, and a kitchen, dining room, bath, and living room cleverly squeezed into one small area. Sometimes the biggest question is “Do we really need a bathtub? A shower takes up less space.”

In old Japan, a farmer’s futon was folded and stored in a closet each morning. Presto! The bedroom became a living room!

“If we have food and clothing,” says Paul, “we will be content with that.” Of course, if we live in northern Canada, we might need a place to get in out of the icy blasts. But Paul’s point is well-taken. Materialism sets all kinds of traps and temptations that can lead us astray from the path of faith.

The tenth commandment— Do not covet (Exodus 20:17)— points the way to contentment. If we always have a roving eye, hankering for our neighbor’s house, car, or spouse, there will be no end to feeling unsettled. But with the Holy Spirit living in our hearts, filling the void that would otherwise drive us to distraction, we have peace and contentment within.

Lord, we do not want to follow one fad after another; we want to follow Jesus in contentment. Lead us, we pray. Amen.

About the author — George Young

George Young, a native New Yorker, worked as a taxi driver in New York City before studying to become a pastor. Then he, his wife Ruth, and their children were missionaries for many years in northeastern Japan. They worked with ministers and believers from the Reformed Church in Japan to spread the good news of salvation in Christ and ­establish new churches. Now George and Ruth are retired and live in the northeastern United States, nearer to their children and grandchildren.

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