October 7, 2020
” And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge of depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ….Philippians 1:9-10
Paul is in jail. We do not know exactly where he is being imprisoned, but he has caused some riots and has caused disruption in the religious lives of the citizens. He is dangerous to the authorities. He is in jail at other times in his life as well. He is a Roman citizen, so he has rights, and must be treated well.
Throughout the first chapter in this letter, he is positive. He wants them to know that they are loved. He is praying for them. Even though he is in jail, the Gospel is being advanced. He mentions that some preach out of love, and others preach out of selfish ambitions. But it does not matter because the Gospel is being preached. Paul rejoices in everything. If he has to die, Christ will gain. We should not be afraid, if we are suffering. God will provide all that we need.
This is a lot of definitions of the ways of Christ.. But, mostly, it is Paul trying to encourage the community in Philippi. Philippi was another of those large city-states that were part of the Empire. The community of believers was small. Paul was their leader and founder. They trusted and loved him, and he wants them to know that he trusts and loves them.
As we will celebrate communion on Sunday, let it bring us together as a community here at Poole. As we take the bread and cup, may you continue to imagine a time when we are together, singing and praying as a “people of the Way.”
Encourage us,when we are frustrated, angry and perplexed,
So that,we might be blessed by each other
by the Spirit
and by the colours of creation of the fall season.
May the different leavesshow us the power of your compassion, love and kindness. Amen.