Finding contentment in authenticity
By: Carl Bliss
It’s a routine we are all familiar with. Each morning, we stand in front of the mirror and prepare our appearance for the day. For some of us, it’s a 5 minute refresh. For others, it’s an hour long ritual. But we make sure that, when we step out the door, we are putting our best face forward.
Our personal appearance is just one place where we look for contentment.
However, if our desire is to be like Jesus, why do we spend so much time finding our contentment in the areas where the Bible doesn’t show us much glimpse into His life?
In his latest book “Contentment“, Dr. Richard Swenson takes a look at the healthy places to find contentment.
We look for contentment in our appearance, yet we have no glimpse at the personal appearance of Jesus.
We look for contentment in our home, but Jesus shared that He “had no place to lay his head”.
We look for contentment in our jobs, but Jesus never seemed to be concerned about His fundraising efforts.
We look for contentment in our heritage, but Jesus was born to a scandalous couple, and raised in an undesirable town.
“Everything we want to know about the rich and famous”, Swenson shares, “everything that is in those magazines, about their lives; God intentionally holds back from us.”
“God looks on the inside. That doesn’t mean we can walk around completely ignoring external things. I have to mow my lawn and I have to paint my house. If it looks horrible, my neighbors wouldn’t be very happy. I have to wash my hair every once in a while. I’m not saying [we can ignore these things]. But God looks on the inside. So, right now if 90-95% of our attention is on the external and 5% is on the internal, I would suggest that maybe we reverse that some.”
Contentment can be found in authenticity. God knows who you are, so work on that person.
“When you lay down and night,” Swenson asks, “and turn the light out, and it’s just you and God, who are you then?”
Listen to Susie Larson’s complete interview with Dr. Swenson: