I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. –Philippians 4:12 NIV
I recently met a homeless man named Tom who lives on the streets of Sarasota, Florida. Soft-spoken, intelligent, and articulate, he’ll greet your gaze with a genuine smile if you look him in the eye. Everything he owns fits in a five-gallon utility bucket.
I offered Tom a small Bible. He received it with great joy and thanks, lamenting that he had lost his previous copy. He revealed that he had spent eighteen months in prison once and had been able to read the Bible several times through.
“It’s good reading,” I said.
“It is good reading,” he agreed. “I like the New Testament because I love reading about Jesus.”
“May I pray for you?” I asked.
“Sure. I pray all the time. Every morning, I wake up and say, ‘God, thank You for another day.’ And every night, I say, ‘God, thank You for getting me through another day.’ I have everything I need: food, my health, and friends who look out for me.”
If you had nothing in this world, would you still praise God? Would you start and end every day with Him? Would you be grateful simply for another day?
- Ask God to help you stop striving for things that don’t matter or satisfy.
- Pray for the gifts of true joy and contentment.