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Jun
09

Posts for My Graduate #10

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Ten is a pretty long list when you blog them one at a time, so thanks for enduring the journey. I hope it’s been helpful. Before I deal with #10, let me take a moment to review the other nine guiding principles from the Ten Commandments:
1. Establish God as the ultimate priority of your life.
2. When you get worship right, a lot of other stuff falls into place.
3. Be a person of character whose word reflects who you are without resorting to “swearing.”
4. Make sure you keep plenty of margin in your life for rest and reflection.
5. Remember that you are not self-existent or self-sufficient.
6. Love other as the Lord Jesus has loved you and forgiven you.
7. Keep your passions in check.
8. Show respect to others, including their stuff.
9. Value the reputation of others by telling the truth.

Number 10 comes last in the list, but is not least in importance. Exodus 20:17 tells us, “You must not covet your neighbor’s house. You must not covet your neighbor’s wife, male or female servant, ox or donkey, or anything else that belongs to your neighbor.”

The bottom line is that we are not to covet. Rather, we are to learn to be content with what God has given us. Covetousness, like envy, desires to have something someone else has. It could be someone else’s personal property. It could even be a trait or talent someone possesses like athletic ability, speed, height, or intellect. When a person covets, they enter a thought process that believes if they have what someone else has, they can be like them. This is why advertisers use celebrities to promote their products.

Here’s the underlying issue: What’s wrong with being you? What’s wrong with having what God has given you?

You have to learn to be content with what you have, but even more important, you have to be content with who you are. I don’t think God is opposed to having nice things. I think God may once in a great while scratch his head in amazement at how much we love stuff. And even more, how much we’d prefer to model our lives after some other human than to pattern our lives after Jesus.

To be content means to be “self contained” or “self sustained.” It means to be “freely independent.” Contentment is satisfied with who one is and what one has because he or she has learned to become satisfied with Christ alone. (Philippians 4:10-20)

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