The secret formula for success is found in one word: Contentment. In Philippians 4:11-12 the Apostle Paul said this: “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” (NIV)
The apostle Paul knew a secret that most people have missed. He knew how to have contentment in any and every circumstance. The very next verse is a famous verse that I hear spoken all the time and it is one of my favorites (I speak it out loud several times a day myself as a discipline to keep contentment on my Life Palette): “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” (Phil. 4:13 NIV)
Circumstances didn’t steal Paul’s peace and joy; in other words whatever was happening around him didn’t overwhelm him or stop what was happening in him: masterpiece living.
Live The Secret Formula Of Success Through Contentment By:
1. Distinguishing Between What You Need And What You Want
Discontentment often stems from not getting what we want. Notice what Paul says a few verses later: “And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:19 NLT) God has promised to meet all of our needs – not our wants.
As a parent I don’t give my kids everything they want, even at times when I can. Why not? I don’t want my kids to be spoiled brats and become lazy and I want them to grow as people of character. I do make sure their needs are met and when their character is able to handle the things they want without it ruining them I often give them what they want as well.
Unless we distinguish between our needs and wants we will live on an emotional roller coaster. Knowing, understanding clearly this distinction is imperative for your Life Palette and to live your potential and success as a masterpiece.
2. Refusing To Blame Circumstances And Others
True contentment cannot hinge on what’s happening around you in your circumstances or on what others say or do; it is based on what is happening inside of you. That is why it is so important for you to understand the incredible truth that you are God’s masterpiece. My book Life Palette is all about making sure you understand this truth and are living in the benefits that are afforded you as a masterpiece, to quit living below your privilege.
Most of us are tempted to think that our contentment is based on us being able to control everything going on around us. We invest so much of our energy and time trying to control our environment rather than growing as a masterpiece. If your contentment can be stolen from a change in your circumstances you will never be content in any circumstance.
Refuse to allow circumstances or others to steal contentment and ultimately success from your life. You must stay focused on the one who gives you contentment, the one who provides all of your needs.
Contentment Is Not Being Lazy
I love being productive. Productivity is important for living out your potential. In fact I must confess that I despise laziness. Contentment is not about being lazy or lackadaisical or living without ambition. The truth is the more you live in contentment the more productive and fulfilled you will be. You will live in greater success as the masterpiece God created you to be.
Take a few moments to prayerfully distinguish between your needs and wants, as well prayerfully consider if you are allowing what’s going on around you to steal your contentment. Resolve to live in the joy and peace that true contentment brings. The secret formula for success is found in that one word: Contentment.
“Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.” 1 Tim 6:6 (NLT)