In Philippians chapter one, verses 20 through 24, Paul writes, “For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die. For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better. But if I live, I can do more fruitful work for Christ. So I really don’t know which is better. I’m torn between two desires; I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me. But for your sakes, its better that I continue to live.”
The selflessness of these verses really touched me when I read them tonight. The phrase ‘bring honor to Christ’ really jumped out at me tonight, and it is clear to me that I was intended to read these particular verses.
I really struggle sometimes with getting caught up in self and resisting changes that God is trying to make in my life. I want to hang on to my old identity, and Paul writes elsewhere in the New Testament that we must be ‘transformed into a new creation’ in order to serve Christ. Jesus himself tells us that we must ‘give up our own way’ if we want to be his follower.
These verses really show us that we need to ask what we can do for God and Christ instead of what they can do for us. When we put it in the perspective that Paul demonstrates here, it makes everything so much clearer. I am grateful to have read this tonight, and to have deepened my understanding of the selflessness necessary to truly serve God and Christ, that Paul shares here.
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