Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Do you have Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter? If you do, you probably know how many followers you have. In fact, perhaps you are trying to increase that number on a regular basis. One thing I have learned from social media is that words and numbers on a screen do not necessarily equate to companionship. Having 100,000 followers does not mean that any of these people are actually there for you. And when you see that number dwindle for one reason or another, you might feel that you have lost something you think is important and valuable. You might feel that your lack of followers actually speaks to your personal value. Maybe you wonder why you do not have as many followers as some other people you know. If you ever feel this way, perhaps you can find comfort in the fact that having God on your side means that you are followed by the greatest of companions.
Having a relationship with God goes beyond having someone there to keep you company. Today’s scripture lets us know something critical about the magnitude of our relationship with God. Coveting is when we desire what someone else has. For example, to covet someone else’s home is not to say that I would like a house just like that but to say that I would like to have that very house. The root of covetousness is the idea that what I have is insufficient because of what I see someone else has. There is a dissatisfaction in one’s provision based on the provision of others. We start to compare and contrast and realize that someone else has something more or something better, and we wonder why God has not given us the same. At the end of the day, God himself is our portion. Not only that, He says that He will never depart from us. What more could we need? He is always there for us no matter what, and that companionship means more than anything we could desire to have.
The lesson here is an understanding that having the companionship of God trumps any other thing we could desire to have. Whether we are speaking of riches, objects, or admirers, focusing on what we lack in those areas takes away from knowing what we have in God. If we understand what it means to have a relationship with a God who will never leave us or forsake us, that companionship should equate to security and satisfaction. I guess the question we must ask ourselves is how we have the attention or energy to focus on our lack when we have such abundance through the companionship that God provides. Father, teach us to be satisfied in You and the companionship You promise to provide continually, and help us to focus on that instead of on the other things in life we think we need and desire to have.