I am creating this week's discussion post a day early because tomorrow is going to be a busy day for some of us. Consider the following quote from Burroughs: "A carnal heart has no contentment from what he sees before him in this world, but a godly heart has contentment from what he sees laid up for him in the highest heavens."
Earlier, Burroughs had made the point that Christian contentment is a mysterious paradox: the godly man is the most contented man in the world, and the most unsatisfied man in the world. Whatever his circumstances in this life, he rests content, and yet he is never content merely with his circumstances. But the contentment of the godly man rests in God alone, as the Psalmist says in Psalm 73:25, "Whom have I in heaven but thee, and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee."
This is what is "laid up" for us in the highest heaven: an eternal Day in the presence of our Creator. This is why the carnal heart (the fleshly, worldly heart) cannot have contentment. This though reminds me of the book of Ecclesiastes. Life under the sun (life lived focused merely on this life) is vanity of vanities and vexation of spirit. This is why the existentialists pined away about the absurdity of human existence. They are without God and without hope in the world.
I also see this quote as a sort of barometer for our spiritual health. Do I find contentment in my circumstances by looking forward to the great hope that lies before me? Or does my "contentment" ebb and flow with the current of life's sea? Is my heart carnal, set upon this world; or is my heart godly, set upon Christ? Is it true of my heart that I cannot be satisfied by anything (or anyone) besides the Lord my God?
What were some of your thoughts regarding this week's reading?