Judge Not Part 4 – The Necessity of Contentment


by Mike Ratliff

10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived thinking about me; indeed, you were thinking about me before, but you lacked opportunity. 11 Not that I speak from want, for I learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in abundance; in any and all things I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Philippians 4:10-13 (LSB)

As I write this it is Labor Day, 2022. I turned 70 years old in October 2021 and officially retired December 24, 2021. Man has everything changed from a year ago. A year ago this week I was working on my book Complete in Christ which is a commentary of Paul’s epistle to the Colossians. My good friend Stuart helped publish it on Amazon and it is available there. However, since I retired things have changed in our lives drastically. My son, who is a physician, had my wife and I up to visit him over the Thanksgiving holiday in November. He had been concerned for quite some time that I had had a stroke that inhibited my ability to speak clearly when under pressure. I suspected something was wrong because this happened to me at the worst possible times such as when teaching a Bile Study. In any case, Thanksgiving Day, one of his physician friends sat next to me at his dining room table while we waited for the turkey to finish cooking and she kept asking me some very strange diagnostic questions. Later, my son told me she was just seeing what my response was to “pressure.” He told me that he still suspected that I had had a small stroke at some time. Well, in March of this year I was sitting here at my desk doing research and suddenly felt my brain go numb. How do you describe something like that? I just sat in my chair and waited for normalcy to come back. Eventually, I felt better, but when I tried to stand up it was like my arms and legs were rubber bands. Eventually, I made it to bed. The next day my wife and I worked on our flower bed retaining wall. I drove over to Home Depot with her to get the blocks and sand. I missed several turns both going there and coming home. The next day, I collapsed in the hallway, running into the wall. My wife and daughter called 911 and I ended up in the hospital. They said I had had a stroke. Continue reading