Paul's Chains Advance the Gospel Part 2

Wow, are we on day four already? I’d just like to thank all of you who are reading this…it really means a lot to me that anyone is reading since I take the time to write these things. I would also like to say that if any of you have any prayer requests, feel free to e-mail them to me at sjr2010@gmail.com…I would be happy to pray for you. Okay, today’s lesson-thingy.

Lord, I ask that You would bless the time that is about to be spent diving into Your word. Please bless those about to read it and be with me as I write it. Give me the wisdom to say what they need to hear, help them to think of their own lives as they read this. Amen.

Read Philippians 1:18b-26

18b Yes, and I will continue to rejoice,
I’ll tell you what…I rejoice every day for the opportunity to be able to write this and to have all of the prayer requests that I’ve gotten. I rejoice in my prayers every day, many times a day. I rejoice again and again, but it is still not enough. It is never enough!

19 for I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, which has happened to me will turn our for my deliverance.
What a powerful statement! Paul is rejoicing because he knows that he will be saved from the prison, he has that much faith in prayer. That is my challenge for you, to put faith in prayer. Have faith that I am praying for you, have faith that you pray for yourself, have faith that the Lord will deliver you from your situation!

20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.
Paul is saying (while he’s in prison, mind you!) that he hopes he courageous enough to honor Christ, and he says that even if he dies, he hopes Christ is still exalted. He is totally giving it all to the Lord right there, saying “hey, God, even if its Your will that I die…I hope I can still honor You.” Wow.

21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.
Once again, Paul is saying that if he dies, its all good…then he’ll just get to be in Heaven, and he’s gaining by leaving this world!

22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24 but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body.
Paul is weighing his options…he wants so much to be with Christ but yet cares enough about those in Philippi that he wants to stay because they need him. This is so much like me, I often give up things (mostly sleep, haha) to help others. (Wow, did I just compare myself to Paul? I think there’s something wrong with my head today…must be the heat.)

25 Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that through my being with you again your joy in Christ Jesus will overflow on account of me.
So Paul is like, “okay, guys, I want to stay because I care about you and I want you to all have joy in the Lord.” Wow…that is so hard to wrap my head around. Paul is saying that he’s going to go through all of this junk (like imprisonment and life sucking) to help others have joy in Christ. To have joy. Its all about the joy!!

Dear God, thank You so very, very much for yet another chance to share Your word with others in this world. I ask that You would be with them and bless them in the coming days. Answer their prayers, Lord, even if the answer is no. Help them, and myself, to rejoice in You always, Lord. Thank You, thank You, thank You…I love You, Lord. Amen.

Be the pinprick of light in the darkness. The star. Be the star.

Posted by Jane | at 6/22/2009 11:32:00 PM

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