Contented as a Dog

One day this past summer, I watched my dog lay beneath my fig tree. She rested her gold-colored head between her forepaws and shut her eyes. I laughed to myself, thinking how easy she had it. I fed her every day, gave her water, took her on walks, played with her–essentially, I provided for her every need, and she was contented.

We who know God have it made, too, if we would just learn to be content. But it’s hard to be content with the world hawking its luxuries. Every time we visit a shopping mall or turn on the TV, we’re bombarded with temptations to buy things we don’t need. Don’t misunderstand me. Nothing’s wrong with owning a few luxuries, so long as we’re not discontented with God’s provision. It’s the grasping hand God frowns upon, the compulsion to want more. “And if we have food and covering, with these we shall be content,” Paul said in 1 Timothy 6:8 (NAS). If this is true of animals like my dog, how much more should it be true of us.

Copyright Jack Cunningham. Originally published in Evangel, August 9, 1999. Free Methodist Church, Light and Life Communications.

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