For our 17th wedding anniversary we left David and Brian with some friends, hired a driver ($35) and went to Abuja for the weekend (a 4 hour drive). Although it was short we had a great time alone. We got a complimentary apartment and had a nice meal out at an Indian restaurant (one of our favorite foods).
On the way home we were talking to our driver (David) about his life and family. This came up because we asked him where he spent the previous night. He said that he slept in our car in the parking lot of the apartment complex. Even though we gave him enough money to get a bed for the night he chose to sleep in the car so that he could use the money to provide more for his family. He said that he will buy extra food and that his family will be very happy.
David is married and has 6 children. His mother, two brothers and an aunt also live with him in the same house. He is the only one bringing home money and earns less than $150 per month as a driver/shopper/gardener (an average wage for that work). David said that his dad died when he was young so he did not have much growing up and learned to live with little. He said that he now only prays for 3 things; to be used in God’s kingdom, a house for his family, and school fees for his children. He does not need anything else. While I am sure he would like more he is for the most part content.
For me, David is another lesson in contentment. I have so much more than David, and yet many times I am not content. I either want more or something different. I think I am growing in this area and I do not chase after things the way I used to, but I still desire more.
Living in Nigeria can be hard, especially when you miss the comforts of your home country, but instead of wishing and praying for more I need to learn to be content with what God has given me, especially with the blessing I have received through Jesus Christ. God has blessed in many ways. I am thankful that God has reminded me of this, through David, and pray that God will continue to bless David with himself.
I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.
I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me (Phil. 4:10-13 ESV).