Good morning! Have you ever said or done something and someone said don’t say or do that, that’s not Christ like? Maybe if you didn’t hear that you certainly heard the words, be lady like or act like a lady or man. From early stages of my life I can recall the type of molding my mom was shaping me to be. One that would act like a lady, be respectful, but strong enough to make decisions for myself. That even when I was out of her presence that she would still receive a good report about my behavior and the decisions that I would make – this wasn’t always an easy task for her, but I tried. The greatest challenge I faced as I began to follow the Lord, was being more Christ like in a world that didn’t always value Christ. Join me today as we finish our first chapter in the book of Philippians.
Bible Verse – Philippians 1:27-30 NLT
“27 Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News.
28 Don’t be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself. 29 For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him. 30 We are in this struggle together. You have seen my struggle in the past, and you know that I am still in the midst of it.”
Paul spent a considerable amount of time teaching and molding believers about Christ and what it meant to be a follower of Christ. In this letter Paul was still molding and shaping the church at Philippi about conducting themselves in a manner that was worthy of the Good News of Jesus Christ. The molding and teaching was intentional because Paul knew he would not be with them forever, but when he was away that they would not forget the teachings and would continue stand together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith – the Good News.
Paul knew the believers would face opposition for their faith, yet he encouraged them to press on anyway. Reminding them of their privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him.
Sisters and brothers, Paul was a great encouragement to the church at Philippi. He provided guidance for them to continue to press on in their faith. I’m not sure if you have someone like Paul to strengthen you and encourage you in the faith, but I want to encourage you today:
- Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ came because God loves you so much and he didn’t want you to perish but to have eternal life. (Refer to John 3:16)
- Regardless of where you are in your walk with Christ there is always more room for growth.
- Despite the temporary world we are in, continue in faith, allow the word of God and the Holy Spirit to continue to mold and shape you to be more Christ like in everything you say and do. So that when others hear and see you (e.g., in your home, on the job, in public, etc.), they see Christ in you.
Will you start today?
Father God, thank you for your unfailing love. Lord forgive us for the times when we did not act Christ like. Lord, last year and even this year exposed areas in our nation, in our churches, in our homes, and on the job where we were not Christ like in our actions or words – Lord, please forgive us. Lord, we want to be better witnesses of Christ within us. Lord will you transform our hearts and minds. Will you mold and shape them to be like yours? Lord, work mightily in our hearts and minds. Remove any spirit that is not of you out of us. Lord, remove the spirit of greed, pride, negativity, anger, vengeance, etc., and fill all those spaces with Your Holy Spirit. Lord, we surrender our will and our lives to you in Jesus name, amen.
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