Weight gain is usually a negative thought except when it concerns a new baby. The baby’s check-ups always included a weighing in, often on cold hard metal, without a diaper and amid much protest. How much and how quickly a newborn gains weight is carefully monitored. The growth charts are regularly checked to verify that the gains are within the norm. Often, being in the ninetieth percentile for weight is a point of understandable pride for the mother.
Today’s verse talks about “great gain.” In our world, a great gain would be a reference either to financial gain or perhaps a gain of physical strength. But this great gain is described as godliness with contentment. Any other kind of gain is left behind. We can bring nothing into this world nor can we take anything out of it. Godliness with contentment is a gain that changes how we live and lasts into eternity!
Contentment is learned (Phil. 4:11-12). Godliness too is something for which we train ourselves (I Timothy 4:7-8). It is a process and I have a long way to go. But the effort is worth it as “godliness has value for all things” (verse 8). To be both content and godly at the same time is of tremendous worth, adding a whole other dimension to my life. Unfortunately, my envy and discontent distract me. My tendency to compromise or rationalize a less-than-godly activity keeps me from progressing. I often feel it is “one step forward, two steps back.” The rare times when both contentment and godliness are present in my day make it a very good one!
Lord, make this day a day of great gain!