Practicing Contentment

He who knows enough is enough will always have enough – Lao Tzu.

How do you know when enough is enough?

Jesus said something that bothered me for years:

25 Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them.” (Mark 4:25, NIV)

I’ve chewed that verse like a cow chews cud.  It just didn’t seem fair to me.

I grew up a glass half empty person.  It was as if I had negative vision: I could only see what wasn’t there.  And not just possessions; accomplishments, skills, physical attributes… the list was unending.  I saw what was lacking in my life, and everywhere I looked I came up short.

Whoever doesn’t have, even what they have will be taken from them.  It’s unpleasant to be around a person with negative vision.  They aren’t thankful for anything, and complain about everything.  They are jealous.  They are insecure.  They are easily offended, because the whole world is an insult to them.

I should know, for that man was me.

Here’s what that verse has come to mean to me: we all have something to be grateful for.  The issue isn’t possession, but recognition.  We’ve all been blessed with life.  And if we’re alive, then we have air to breathe, water to drink, and food to eat.  Give thanks.

We’ve all been blessed with some interest, some activity we like to do.  Enjoy it.  Practice it.  And give thanks.

We all know people who are better than us in those things we’re interested in or like to do.  Admire them.  Get to know them.  Learn from them.  And give thanks.

Whoever has will be given more: this is the path to true wealth.  Before long you not only discover how blessed you are, but that you are a blessing too.

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