“Guess how [the cycle of discontent] leaves you feeling? Perpetually discontent. . . . Nothing’s ever good enough for long. And the discontent makes you feel empty. You’ve run everything through a ‘you’ filter your entire life, and you’re still not happy.”- Carey Nieuwhof
“If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.”- Luke 9:24 (NLT)
In Chapter 14 (“My Kingdom Come?”), the concluding chapter of Didn’t See It Coming, Carey Nieuwhof states that getting over yourself is not as scary as you think. First, he describes a principal marketers call WIFM: “What’s in it for me?”
Thus, the only way you as a consumer will ever buy a product centers around your belief the product will make your life better. But, making you the mission of your life only results in endless sad discontent. Most noteworthy, Pastor Nieuwhof cautions you to watch out if WIFM becomes your spiritual filter. When that happens, God will seem only as good as He’s been to you lately. That leaves you empty and so disillusioned.
Therefore, the antidote to emptiness, the giant nail in the coffin of WIFM, consists of this: find a mission that’s bigger than you (emphasis Carey’s). Yet, Carey notes, your inner default setting works against a mission that’s bigger than you. However, in Luke 9:24 Jesus gets to the essence of our frustration. Hence, He proposed a radical solution.
In conclusion, Pastor Nieuwhof states, Jesus’ words move beyond trusting your life to Him as Savior. Because, if we simply trust Him as Christians, we’ll quickly slide back into the Kingdom of Me. So, it’s bad theology to view God as a vending machine. Especially, Carey quips, when you drop your money in and no candy bar comes out. The author explains:
“If I pray for my will to be done, I get more of me. If I pray beyond that — if I pray for God’s will to be done– I get more of God.”
Today’s question: What life events left you feeling perpetually discontent? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Knowledge of self, knowledge of God”