Dissatisfaction vs. Contentment

Feeling restless? Discontent with your circumstances? Does it seem that nothing ever satisfies?

Why are some people chronically dissatisfied, while others are content with the way things are? There must be something fundamentally flawed in the soul of one who is always dissatisfied. It must be a sin issue.

Having said that, we hasten to add that not all dissatisfaction is sinful.

For instance, there is nothing wrong with dissatisfaction at sin and injustice. We should be dissatisfied with these wrongs and strive to correct them.

The kind of dissatisfaction we are concerned with here is the kind that says, “I want more money, more stuff, more fun, more comfort in life—and I deserve it. I’d better take over the responsibility for myself; God isn’t doing a good enough job.”

But dissatisfaction is not only a slap in the face of God; it is also a way we rob ourselves of the joy we might have day by day, because we obsess about what we might have in the future instead of enjoying what we do have in the present. And as we become restless, resentful, and bitter, other people naturally prefer not to be around us.

Contentment ought to be the birthright of all Christians. However, not all enjoy contentment. What about you? Are you dissatisfied? Do you have a problem with envy or greed? Is your attitude marked by complaining and ingratitude? Are you prepared to steal and grab to get what you want?

Stop for a minute and think about what you do have. You would like to have more money—but how much money do you have? There are some things you would like to own—but what do you own? Perhaps your physical health is limited—but what can you do? How are you blessed with abilities that enable you to create beauty, with friends who bring richness to life, or with good memories that warm your heart in moments of solitude?

Gratitude is like a lens that helps us refocus our attention from our perceived lacks (which might not be good for us anyway) to our actual blessings from God. In this way, gratitude leads us to contentment and brings healing to our soul.

The task of one with a dissatisfaction habit is not only to eliminate the sin of dissatisfaction from his or her life but also to cultivate the virtue of contentment.

Contentment is a special benefit available to all followers of Jesus Christ. It is not something we can work up on our own. Rather, it is something we can receive as a gift while we cooperate with the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives.

Contentment is not consistent with unrighteous desires, for unrighteous desires will always trouble our spirit. However, being content does not necessarily mean we give up wanting things that are legitimately good.

When Christ fills your heart and mind, you can be at peace and content with the things, people, and circumstances our sovereign God has placed in your life. The only thing that truly satisfies is knowing Jesus Christ. Striving, coveting, and spending our time wanting what is not available to us can leave us broken and bitter.

God is orchestrating life’s circumstances leading us toward the fulfillment of His plans for our individual lives and for history as a whole. Contentment is a result of trusting the fact that God knows perfectly what is best to give us and when. It is saying yes to His blessings upon us. They are enough; we need no more.

5 Steps to Overcome Dissatisfaction

Discover how to overcome dissatisfaction in its various forms through time-tested insights that really work!

We have outlined a five-step process in the free ebook, DISSATISFACTION: The Restless Heart, to help you work through the repair of that area of your life.

[Download DISSATISFACTION: The Restless Heart for free now!]

Related Articles: