Athlete, Here is Great Gain


Athlete, Here is Great Gain

Morris Michalski

1 Timothy 6:6 (NIV)

But godliness with contentment is great gain.

It sure is satisfying to get out in front of others … in traffic, in a race, in team standings, in fashion perhaps, in a checkout line for sure, or just being in the know. Who likes to get stuck?! 

But it’s not usually good to get ahead of ourselves. Controlling our urges and managing our life tempo is equally as important as getting ahead. 

God’s Word encourages us to place two things out in front of many others: GODLINESS with CONTENTMENT. These two have a way of getting buried, sidelined and saved only for mop up time in our lives. 

But God says that when these two virtues get way ahead of other things, when they get “meaningful minutes” in our lives, great gain follows.

“Godliness” is a good word. It calls for the practice of conforming to the good laws and wishes of God. It challenges us to high standards and champions purity. It is the courageous pursuit of moral uprightness. 

Contentment is a good word too. It asks us to be satisfied with how God made us and what we have. It keeps us at ease and on balance, moving forward at sensible speed. 

Contentment is not the enemy of progress. It just keeps us from being destroyed by dissatisfaction and overrun by materialism. The competitive, consumer world we live in constantly creates discontent. 

Our own human nature struggles with it too. We’re always led to believe that if one is good, two is better. That’s not always true. Contentment is only dangerous in regard to complacency.

We get ahead of ourselves in godliness when we think we’ve already arrived. Godliness is a journey more than a destination. And we get ahead of ourselves in contentment when we think our satisfaction will come from some new acquisition (be it person or thing). 

Godliness and contentment are ultimately found in the Lord, in whom we belong, not in how well we can self-justify or what all we have.

Augustine of Hippo’s famous quote bears mention here: “Thou hast made us for Thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in Thee.“

One more word … In order to be good at godliness and contentment we have to be good at saying “yes” and “no” to desires. The greater our skill and power to do this, the greater our gain. 

Relying on God’s Spirit is key. He can flat out coach! Let Him make the calls. 

So if you wanna get ahead and experience truly great gain, pursue godliness with contentment. Satisfaction guaranteed.

Reflect: Do you believe that godliness with contentment is great gain? Where might you be restless and why? Who or what specifically might God be coaching you to say “yes” to right now and to whom or what  is He wanting you to bring a more definitive “no”?

A prayer to consider: O LORD, You are so true and wise and strong. Lead me in godliness and contentment. That’s where I want to get and stay way ahead. I want to be pure like Jesus and simply satisfied like a child. 

I know this is where great gain is found. Teach me to better say yes and no to myself and others by Your Spirit. I’m counting on You! For Your glory and my joy, I pray this. Amen.

we saved you a seat