Complacency Versus Contentment
by Curt Klingeman
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Complacency is the counterfeit of contentment. Its very nature is apathy, and therefore does not care about the will of God. Complacency is apathy in motion, which is an oxymoron. Contentment means satisfaction wherever God has placed someone. Those who are content care very much about the will of God. Therefore, their desire is to be directly in the middle of it. It is the place they are the most content. The complacent simply do not care, nor do they have their ears open to hear the Voice of the Lord. As a result, should the Lord call to them they will not hear, much less listen. When He calls them to another place, they will remain where they are. They are in a slumber and need to be woken up. Those who are content, keep their ears open to hear the next move should the Lord call. Again, they want to remain in they center of His will.
Hebrews 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee (KJV). 1Timothy 6:6-11 But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness (KJV).
Being content does not necessarily mean one does not want more; it means one is satisfied with what he has and where he is currently placed. The desire for more does not pertain so much to worldly goods, but heavenly treasures. The desire is for the things above. It means wanting a deeper relationship with God and more gifts in order to be bigger blessing. Earthly goods are tools to be used for the Kingdom. Whether one has more things or less, it is irrelevant. He is satisfied with such as he has. One who is content will have goals; one who is complacent has no goals. The former will have due diligence, especially when it comes to his relationship with God. The latter could care less. He is in a spiritual slumber. He is completely unaware of the things pertaining to the Spirit. He simply does not care.
At the same time, weariness can be mistaken for complacency. Meaning that those who are wore out are simply too tired to care. Ironically, they want to care, they are just incapable. In some cases, those who are weary have not learned to rest in the Lord. As a result, they have worn themselves out. For others, they have endured hardship and have lost zeal they once had. Whatever the reason, they are just overloaded and have come to a standstill. The thought of doing anymore or facing something new overwhelms them. They cannot go on. They need to be refreshed. With this in mind, contentment is also a state of rest. It flows with the will of God. While it will move forward because it follows His will, contentment will not drive the individual.
While the content may be carrying out a goal, he is satisfied with each step he takes. He is not obsessed to take the next one; he embraces the one he is currently taking. He is satisfied with one step at a time. He gives diligence to each step, whereas, the complacent do not care if they ever take another one. In essence, the content have ceased from their own works and have entered into the Lordís rest (see Hebrews 4:10). They walk by faith and are satisfied with where the Lord leads them and what the Father gives them. The complacent do not walk at all. They want many things, but they do not care to work for them, nor are they able to receive by faith. In some cases, complacent Christians claim to be receiving by faith, but in reality, they are being lazy. They wait for others to give to them those things they should get for themselves. They will not receive by faith because they do not want to have do something God may ask of them. Faith manifests itself through works; therefore, they will not walk by faith (see James 2:17-18). The complacent do not walk because they do not care to listen. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). It is not those who cannot hear who are deaf; it is those who will not hear. Complacency is deaf!
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