Contentment is beautiful because contentment brings joy. It’s not something that comes naturally, but something that we have to learn (Philippians 4:11). The world doesn’t help, as it seems to be set up to only deepen our discontentment. But, paradoxically, the pathway to joy comes through the avenue of contentment.
To grow in contentment, many suggest grattitude — to be grateful for what you have. This is true. And also probably obvious. But I want to propose an unconventional path to contentment: Celebrating your accomplishments.
In his book, The Dude’s Guide to Manhood, Author and Pastor, Darrin Patrick, writes, “If we don’t pause to celebrate the various chapters in our life and accomplishments, then our awareness of what we’ve accomplished will become vague, and our discontentment will grow.”
We’ve all heard about the business owner who’s determined to succeed and works incessantly. They’re hungry, ambitious, driven. They’re up at 5:00am, and work past midnight. They accomplish some goals. Their business grows. They make some money. They like the taste of success, and they become addicted to it as it becomes their identity. Because it makes them feel “alive,” they can’t imagine life without it, and never seem to stop working because they don’t want to feel inadequate.
They feel like they have to keep striving, to keep doing, to keep working. On the outside, they appear noble and successful. On the inside, they may feel empty and miserable. Why? They never stop to celebrate their accomplishments. They’re afraid that if they do, they’ll become complacent and stop achieving. But this is the opposite of what is true.
The world celebrates them, but they never celebrate.
Whatever it is, stop and remember that all good things come from God (James 1:17), and respond in a celebratory fashion, glorifying God for what he’s given you, and reflecting on what God has done through you.
If we stop, pause, reflect and think about what God has done, is doing, and will do in our life, we will further be aware of his blessings, and our contentment and joy will grow.
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