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Choosing Contentment

1. How would you describe people who are not satisfied with what they have and direct their energies to always acquiring more? How have you seen that sort of behaviour affect others? 2. If there were such a thing as a “contentment-o-meter” that measured your level of contentment in life - zero being low, ten being high – what would it be indicating in your life right now? Where in your life are you content? Where are you discontent? 3. What have you learned in your journey are some significant steps you can take to being content in life? 4. In 2 Corinthians 2:12b (LB) we read: “Their trouble is that they are only comparing themselves with each other and measuring themselves against their own little ideas.” What are some problems that arise in our hearts when we compare ourselves to others? 5. Exodus 20:17 reads: “Do not desire another man's house; do not desire his wife, his slaves, his cattle, his donkeys, or anything else that he owns.” Why is coveting included in the 10 Commandments along with prohibitions against murder, adultery and other grievous sins? How would you define covetousness? 6. In Ecclesiastes 5:19 (GN) we read: “If God gives us wealth and property and lets us enjoy them, we should be grateful and enjoy what we have worked for. It is a gift from God.” What is our attitude toward what we own supposed to be? What does it mean that everything we have is a gift from God? How does that perspective change our attitude toward what we don’t have? 7. 1 Timothy 6:17 (NLT) says: “Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment.” How does our attitude toward our wealth affect how we live and the decisions we make? What does it mean “not to trust in their money”? 8. In Luke 12:15 (NLT), Jesus said: “Beware! Guard against every kind of greed. Life is not measured by how much you own.” Why are we to guard against greed in our lives? What does it do to us? Why is materialism so destructive to our spiritual lives? 9. What two things does the author of the prayer in Proverbs 30:7-9 (NLT) ask for? “O God, I beg two favors from you; let me have them before I die. First, help me never to tell a lie. Second, give me neither poverty nor riches! Give me just enough to satisfy my needs. For if I grow rich, I may deny you and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’ And if I am too poor, I may steal and thus insult God’s holy name.” Why does the author not want poverty? Why does he not want riches? 10. What are the readers to fix their attention on as stated in 2 Corinthians 4:18 (NIV)? “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” What unseen things should have a priority in our lives? How does someone make eternal values a priority? 11. Ask yourself, "What do I think about most?" or "What am I living for?" Are you going to live for the Master, or are you going to live for money?