Satisfied : Discovering Contentment in a World of Consumption by Jeff Manion
This is what I learned from Satisfied. It has changed my perspective on some things and I think it is worth the read, I'm actually considering reading it again, and trying to convince my husband to read it too!
Satisfied is about finding Biblical Direction in order to live a deep spiritual life while living in a shallow and materialistic society. We should be living a counter-cultural lifestyle. We should be content in every circumstance because when you are content your hear is satisfied, and not just a shallow satisfaction, your heart should be full of joy and be filled with deep peace even and especially when we don't get what we want. So, you want to simplify your life but not simply live with less but have a satisfied life without the excess.
One of the big hurdles of living a contented life is comparison. You can be totally satisfied with all you have but as soon as you notice that your neighbor has more and better, it's harder to be happy with your own lot. Envy becomes overwhelming and brings on temptation and uncontempt. This is when you need to find your identity because your identity is your behavior. And having an identity in Christ defines that you are not abandoned, not betrayed, not deserted. You should not define yourself by the obstacles you have faced, but by Christ, who took you in and claimed you.
But we also must not take what we do have for granted. Being arrogant is not the right way. You should neither forget your identity. Do not place your trust in your things, your job, your stuff, put your trust in Jesus. Also, acts of service will keep you humble if you do slip in to arrogance. It will help you put your focus on others instead of being self-centered. Be willing to share. That's what it comes down to.
Train yourself to give, without holding back. Trust that no matter how bad the situation might be, if your trust is in God, He will provide your needs for you. Maybe not your wants, but your needs will be covered. But beware, your spiritual reliance might decline if you become more comfortable.