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Winter of Discontent

Picture of a man looking unhappy. Behind him is a wall covered in graffiti. The words to Romans 12:2 ESV, "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."
by Beeda Speis for Peace in the Stillness

I know so many people who are in a “winter of discontent.” They seem to complain about everything and be happy about nothing. It makes for a miserable existence.

When I think of the word “discontent” I immediately think of the first line from Richard III (by William Shakespeare): “Now is the winter of our discontent…” Without knowing the rest of the soliloquy, I assumed Richard was lamenting something present, but he goes on to say, “Made glorious summer by this sun of York;” where he’s celebrating the end of King Henry VI’s reign and the beginning of his older brother’s, King Edward IV’s, reign as King. Which is a lesson in the importance of not taking things out of context.

Anyway, I was thinking about the unhappiness of discontent people and the presumed unhappiness of Richard III because of that famous line. So then I researched what the Bible says about discontent. It focuses a lot on the discontentment people experience when they love money more than God. That isn’t what we’re focusing on this week.

They know better (than everyone else)

Our focus is on those who see the negative side of everything. They never see the silver lining. They rarely get to experience those “aha” moments when God reveals His plans or shows the connectedness of events. To this person, everything is hopeless. Some of them experience a great deal of pride because they have it all figured out. They would do things differently than those who they’re complaining about, and then everything would work out perfectly.

They say things like, “If it were me, I’d have done this.” Or, the person is highly judgmental, “These so-called Christians are biblically illiterate. They have no idea what they’re talking about.” “I wish such and so would do things my way. It would be so much better.”

Instead of being a solution to a problem, the discontent adds to the problem, making it almost insurmountable.

Bible Verse of the Day

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romans 12:2 ESV

Prayer

Dear Father, we lift up to You people who are discontent with life. We pray that they seek Your will and in so doing, find contentment and fulfillment in this life. We’re here for such a short time; it’s important that we do as much as we can for the Kingdom while we’re here. Not that people who are discontent don’t do Your will, but we pray that their eyes, hearts, and minds be opened to Your sovereignty. We pray that they see Your purposes in everything, learn patience, and trust in You completely. In Jesus’ precious name, we pray. Amen.

I won’t ask for initials this week, because I don’t want anyone to feel as if they’re calling out a loved one. Please focus your prayers on those in your heart. If you don’t know anyone like this, please pray for those types of people, in general. If you or someone you know needs prayer, feel free to contact me here.

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