After the Civil War, Daniel Hale moved to northeastern Runnels County, Texas. He immediately fell in love with the area because it felt like his old Kentucky home. Eventually, he founded a town fourteen miles northeast of Winters, and named it Content, “for the contentment of the valley.” At its’ peak in 1890, Content had a population of 200, including a church, school, post office, two gins, and a blacksmith shop.
But then the church left town!
The history of the Content is sketchy, but when the railroad went to East Bernard instead of Content, people were becoming discontent in Content. By 1970, there were three houses left in Content, and the area is now considered a ghost town.
One of the prominent residents of Content was Louis Pietzsch. Like many of his friends, Pietzsch had immigrated to Texas from Germany in 1868, hoping to escape political and religious oppression. Once here, he lived in several communities including Content. But when he saw the beautiful San Bernard river at the town of East Bernard, he knew he had found home. So, he packed up his family and bought four thousand acres along the river.
After settling in, Pietzsch invited his former neighbors in Content to join him in East Bernard. Since they were growing unhappy with the town, they agreed to move to East Bernard if provision could be made for their church. So, they dismantled the church facility, board by board, and Pietzsch convinced the railroad company to move it without charges. It was then reassembled on the five acres of land Pietzsch had donated, and East Bernard became their home.
But there was one more stipulation the church members had before they would agree to leave Content. They wanted Rev. H. W. Weise, the beloved pastor of the Content church, to move with them. Once he agreed to the move, the decision was final. The First United Methodist church continues to meet at 421 Pietzsch Street, to this day.
When I read this story, I was amazed at the dedication and commitment these people had to the Lord and His church. With incredible sacrifice, they placed the priority of an edifice of worship above their own personal homes. It all began when the people became discontent in Content. There was a stirring in their spirit that change was coming.
What a great message for us today. We can be living in a favorable situation when God begins to stir our spirit for better things. This is often the way God does business. Abraham had a good life when God began to put a vision of better things in his heart. Abraham abandoned the comforts of home to seek a “city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.” (Hebrews 11:10)
The visionaries of Hebrews 11, were all stirred by God to make a change, to see the unseen, and to walk a path not yet travelled. Consider Hebrews 11:13 NIV, “All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth.”
Is God stirring your contented spirit? Perhaps it’s time to kneel before the Lord and prepare for a change.