Robert Griffith | 30 September 2022
Robert Griffith
30 September 2022


How would you characterize your level of contentment? When you look at your life, how would you describe the feelings you have toward it? Look at the various component parts of your life. So many things are involved – where you work, where you live, who you’re married to or not, how much money you have, how much education you have, how much you weigh, how many opportunities you have, and on and on it goes. We could go through each item and you could rate your level of satisfaction or dissatisfaction on each one. Where you think you would be? Would you be singing the little chorus that goes, “I’m so happy, so very happy, I’ve got the love of Jesus in my heart,” or would you be singing that well-known song, “I can’t get no satisfaction”?

When you think about it, there probably is a lot in every one of our lives that we may want to change. All of us may have some level of dissatisfaction about many things. But the two questions I would like to ask are these: Where does that come from and where does it lead? Where does your dissatisfaction come from? In other words, why are you so dissatisfied? You might think that is a stupid question. You are dissatisfied because you’re not happy with the situation. But it might not be as simple as that. You see, you are assuming that your unhappiness is a healthy response to a bad situation. Have you ever considered that you may be unhappy because your perspective has been altered? It may be that you have been programmed to be unhappy.

Our whole society promotes dissatisfaction with life. In some ways, it is built into the economic system of capitalism. Goods and services are marketed through advertising – and the goal of advertising is to create a felt need for the product. They want to convince you that you need this new thing – and to do that they need to convince you that you are not satisfied with what you have now. If you could only get the new, the improved, the bigger and better whatever – then the quality of your life would take a giant step forward. The sad thing is, we fall for it. Sometimes it is more than just a better brand of toothpaste. Often people think that if they could only get that new husband or wife, they would be better off. And they fall for it. This consumerist approach to life comes at us from every direction. The incessant bombardment we receive through advertisements on TV, radio, billboards, magazines, newspapers  and the internet – all programs our minds to think a certain way about things, and about what brings real happiness. The message is that if only our situation were different we would be happier and more fulfilled. The situation is what is at fault. It’s that sorry old job. If only I had a different one. It’s those extra 10 kilos. If only I could be a little thinner. You fill in the blank. If only I could change THAT!

Now where does all this lead? Well it leads in many directions, none of them positive. It leads to a general dissatisfaction with life, as well as further unhappiness. Perhaps worst of all, it keeps you from being the man or woman of God that you were created to be because it leads you to believe that you are not in a position to serve God yet. If only you could change this or that, then you could really serve God. But not now, not in your current situation. This is the lie and it’s something you need to address or you will be held in miserable bondage to it for the rest of your unhappy life.

God wants you to bloom where you have been planted.

He can use you right now, in the situation in which you find yourself. Unless it is a sinful situation that you need to forsake and abandon, He can show you His purpose for using your current situation for your good and for His glory. God is always aware of our situation. Our challenge is to be God’s man or God’s woman, living as a Christian ought to live, responding as a Christian ought to respond, as we work with what has been dealt to us. When we do, two things will happen. The first is that our own feelings about life will change. We will begin to see how many gifts we have been given and how much we have for which to be thankful. The mountains will become molehills once again and we will simply step over them or walk around them. Our level of peace will increase and pessimism will be replaced by optimism and hope. In short, God will do something in our hearts. We will become better people – people of joy.

The second thing that will happen is that others will notice the difference. They will see the difference that God makes in a person who is committed to living their lives by the principles of His word. As we face some of the difficulties of the majority of people in the world, people will come to understand that following Jesus is not ‘pie in the sky in the sweet by and by’ – it is a practical faith that deals with life as it is. In short, we will be a living testimony of God’s grace – God’s empowering presence in our lives.