11.4.15

godliness + contentment

Paul refers to people that imagine godliness to be a means of profit as having been 'robbed of the truth'. He says that they're 'corrupt in mind'. 

And then he says this: Now godliness with contentment is great gain. 

Godliness, referring to a complete reverence, awe, devotion to God that transforms the way you live -- together with contentment, viewing what you have to be sufficient? -- this is great gain. 

GODLINESS

I confessed to God that I wasn't liking the word devotion. It brings too deep a sense of commitment, and something about that word gets me slightly scared. It's the idea that there's only one direction, and you don't just change your mind and turn away. It's serious. It's no longer me-and-what-I-want-and-what-I'm-feeling.  

And then I realised what a holy & beautiful thing it is to be devoted to someone. And the idea of being devoted to God became to me what it really is: freedom. 


To be devoted to God is to be freed from self. To be devoted to God is to be freed of the yearning to be approved by people. To be devoted to God? Is to lose your desire to be glorified. 

If this is godliness, then how come it's not gain? 

The people Paul refers to in 1 Timothy sought godliness as a means of attaining wealth. A way of improving their standing with people, a means of glorifying themselves. The godliness they knew was distorted. 

They wanted God for what He could do for them, and not for who He was. I know I'm fully guilty for that a thousand times over. 

Godliness has to be about seeking God glorified. Not ourselves. 

Godliness on its lonesome cannot be about any worldly gain. 

It's about the desire of our heart. Our motives. True godliness works to destroy the desire for our own glory and draws us deeper into God. True godliness causes us to exalt in the joy of the glory of God. Without the glory of God being our ultimate passion & desire, we're unable to move forward toward any real form of gain.

CONTENTMENT 

So, there's this: contentment. The viewing of what we have to be sufficient. 

Reason and Logic are probably swapping glances about now, trying not to chuckle. She thinks having what you already have is gain?

Let's forget gain a moment. 

Contentment refers to a sense of satisfaction and fulfilment derived from what already is. Of what has already been received. 

If discontentment refers to a craving for more, contentment recognizes that what presently exists is gift. 

An appreciation for whatever is currently before you, rather than a belief that it is deserved -- is a cultivation of gratefulness. 

And it is this deliberate thanks that brings joy. It is proven fact (Reason and Logic would know) that thankfulness brings joy. 

And what is it that Piper proclaims? Oh yeah, right. 

God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him. 

As long as we're seeking our own glory, we'll be seeking to be satisfied in our own glory.

It is contentment that allows the fruit of godliness to be made evident. 

Contentment evidences the grace & joy discovered in the pursuit of complete reverence toward God through our obvious satisfaction in what we have, much or little. Because contentment refers to one perceiving what they have to be sufficient -- despite anything and everything. 

And it is this that brings glory to God. Us, absolutely full of joy in absolutely everything God is -- 

our desire for God deemed true in our joyfulness of this present moment.

The act & pursuit of godliness is grace that wrings us out of ourselves & sinks us into God. Contentment is necessary to display what we have found in God -- fullness of joy & complete satisfaction. 

GAIN
God glorified and us absolutely full of joy. This joy contagious equating in every broken soul falling absolutely in love with God & Him glorified. On and on and on. 

It's purpose and hope and reason. 
It's holy. 
What the flippin' flip. 

:: 

I don't know anything. I want to know what's true. I want to want God glorified. 

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