Struggling with Discontent, part 2 of 3

Image by George Hodan at
Image by George Hodan at

In part 1 of this article, I enumerated some of the things I blame for our habitual discontent.I ranted about some of the nice things most of us love to watch and follow (Disney movies, Hero movies, reality-TV, tele-evangelists, etc…). I expressed that I think these, despite of their good intentions, teach us never to be content with what we have.

Here’s the rest of it…

All these and more give us discontent. They pressure us to come up with a solution that will make all our troubles go away— or be labelled boring or unblessed. These suggest that money, fame and power will solve all problems. If only we could just break-free from the prison that we’re in. If only we could escape…

But what is real? Your life is real. Your problems are real. Your job, no matter how meager it is, is real.

Let’s get even closer to reality…

Girls, odds are, no prince charming will come to your rescue. And guys, for goodness sakes, find a job or build a business when you can and don’t wait for good fortune. Stop trying to become someone you’re not.

No superheroes will come to save us from a failing economy. We’ll just have to figure it out ourselves.  Most of the time, the greatest dangers we face is not physical and do not come from zombies or cataclysmic events (good luck to the doomsday preppers out there). The real heroes are those who do their jobs well and add value to the community.

Stardom is not the solution to anyone’s problems. We need to tell that to the youth. There are millions wanting to be in a Reality TV Show. Even if you can manage to get in, its no guarantee that you’ll stay up there for long. Stars do fade and fall, often. And, even if you’re just a simple fan, try to look at how much of your time and money is spent on watching them on TV and on buying the products that these shows promote. You buy them because you’ve been taught that what you see in the mirror is below expectations. Can you spell S-U-C-K-E-R?

Politicians are necessary. We do need to respect and submit to them. Someone has to lead and take care of the nation. But its just wrong to depend on them to make our future brighter. These guys are not at the very top of the society, we are. That’s why they’re called public servants. Its just sad that the public perception is inverted. Its a pity to see that there are unfortunate citizens out there depending on hand outs from the government without looking for a way out of their situation; thinking that they are entitled to government help because they have voted for those in position. Progress in our lives can’t be entrusted to politicians. They’re too busy promoting themselves. Depend on them for your personal progress, and the result would be a joyless life full of bitterness.

This may come as a surprise to you, but please read on after this:

Do not entertain any preacher who teaches that God will shower you with money, fame and good health for as long as you are faithful with your giving.

This is where I’ll linger… You only have to take a second look at Bible stories and you’ll realize that it is filled with, not only blessings, but sufferings as well. Living a Christian life is no guarantee that your problems will go away. It’s not a bed of fragrant flowers. Being a believer does not guarantee that your sickness or difficulties will disappear. Paul did all those great feats of faith with an illness. The Lord Jesus Himself was born into a simple life. You know how the rest of His story goes.

There are preachers who will teach you that since Jesus suffered and died already, you don’t have to. This is true, but it should always be followed by this other truth:

We are not in charge, God is.

Yes, there are abundant blessings, healing and prosperity— all good things— from God through the cross of Jesus. Amen to that. But He also has a grand plan that will be followed. Sometimes, it is part of His will for suffering to stay, for evil to triumph, for poverty to linger, for sickness to occur. Why these have to stay, no one knows for sure (more on that here). That’s why faith (believing in God and His goodness despite of difficulties) is very important to us and to Him. This is why, in the gospels, Jesus emphasized the value of faith, even if its as small as a mustard seed.

The Lord’s sovereign plan will not take a backseat so you can have your little project. The prayers we say are not to change His mind, it’s to mold ours into His.

End of Part 2…