Summer 2024

Daily Devotional: Friday, March 29 - Content In The Cross

“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” — Philippians 4:11-12

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In the press conference before his team’s first game in the 2019 NCAA Tournament, University of Virginia men’s basketball coach Tony Bennett reflected on the Cavaliers’ historic loss to No. 16-seed UMBC the year before. He told the media that he had emphasized to his players that peace and perspective cannot come from basketball. They have to come from something unconditional. For Bennett, that is his faith and his family.

“I always challenge our guys: ‘What’s your secret of contentment?'” he said during a press conference. “Because there’s going to be times … you’re going to be well fed and living in plenty, and there’s going to be times where you’re going to be starving and living in want.”

That 2019 team went on to win a national championship, and Bennett’s message remained the same: Basketball cannot provide true contentment and purpose, even when it involves winning the NCAA Tournament. Nothing conditional can.

Jesus dying on the cross is the greatest act of unconditional love in history. He gave up His life so that we don’t have to place our hope and identity in something circumstantial that will ultimately leave us feeling unfulfilled.

We can be content during the best and worst moments of our lives because nothing can change the unconditional love God has for us. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. We have hope because the work is already done. As Jesus said with His final breath, “It is finished” (John 19:30).

— Joshua Doering

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