“His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” 2 Peter 1:3 (CSB)
Recently, I traveled to visit our adult daughter who’d just purchased her first home, an adorable mid-century brick ranch. After a week of unpacking boxes, cleaning cupboards and organizing closets, I packed one more item — my carry-on bag — and headed back to the airport to return home.
After an hour-and-a-half flight, the aircraft touched down. And as always, when opening the overhead compartment to retrieve my carry-on bag, I scrutinized it very carefully to be sure I was grabbing the correct one. Since many travelers have a basic black suitcase on wheels, it is easy to retrieve the wrong one.
I popped open the bin and laughed at what I saw. One savvy traveler had used white paint to write two simple words on the bottom of his suitcase: “Not yours!” And it worked. No one grabbed his luggage mistakenly.
God used that humorous incident to speak to my heart that day. At that time in my life, I was wrestling with feelings of envy toward a few people in my circle of friends. My unique shade of green greed had established an ugly root in my heart, causing me to focus on what I lacked, rather than on the blessings I did have.
Spying the words, “Not yours!” on that suitcase was the wake-up my wandering mind needed. I needed to stop envying the lives God had given others and be satisfied with the one He has given me.
Today’s key verse makes this bold statement about our lives: “His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness” (2 Peter 1:3). While we might not have _________ (fill in the blank with your own area of envy), we do have all we need to live a life of godliness.
All humans who turn their lives over to God have equal access to Him. We all can study His Word, connect with Him through prayer, and discover a fulfilling life serving Him on earth. His unfailing love toward each of us is vast, without partiality and never-ending.
Sure … you might not have the financial stability of your friend, but you do have all you need to live a life of godliness as you grow in your knowledge of God.
Perhaps you did not experience an “ideal upbringing” like that woman in your Bible study, but you do have all you need to live a life of godliness as you grow in your knowledge of God. (And odds are, it wasn’t always ideal for her either. But that’s another story.)
You might not be as fit and fabulous-looking as the friend whose post you just saw in your feed, but you do have all you need to live a life of godliness as you grow in your knowledge of God.
Your children may not be as well-behaved, your husband not as attentive or your mother-in-law as sweet as the next gal’s, but you do have all you need to live a life of godliness as you grow in your knowledge of God.
So, the next time you find yourself envious, wanting to grab what someone else has, remind yourself, “Not yours!” Instead, focus your mind on God, thanking Him for the many blessings — no matter how simple — He has gifted to you.
We can choose to be content rather than waste energy wishing we resided in someone else’s circumstances. Let’s spend our time pursuing godliness as we deepen our walk with Jesus. Maybe we don’t have what someone else does, but we do have the Lord, and He is enough.
Father, I want to learn to be content despite my circumstances. Help me keep my eyes on You rather than on others who seem to have a better life than I do. You are all I need. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY
1 Timothy 6:6, “But godliness with contentment is great gain.” (CSB)
Proverbs 14:30, “A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” (NIV)
For the woman who inspires you the most … who embodies all the attributes of a godly woman … who reminds you to put your trust in God … who has strength and faith in God regardless of any circumstance — tell her what she means to you with a gift that serves as a reminder every day. Shop the Mother’s Day Collection in our bookstore!
If you want to learn more about joyfully living the life you have been given, check out Karen Ehman’s book LET. IT. GO.: How to Stop Running the Show and Start Walking in Faith. A companion DVD Bible study for group or individual use is also available.
For more on the topic of contentment and a fabulous giveaway based on Karen’s book and Bible study, LET. IT. GO.: How to Stop Running the Show and Start Walking in Faith, head to her Instagram account.
REFLECT AND RESPOND
In which area of your life are you tempted to be envious of others? How can today’s verse encourage you to focus on living a life of godliness rather than wishing you dwelt in someone else’s circumstances? Let us hear from you!
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