October 12, 2020
” Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
This passage could have been written by a follower of Jesus today. We could call it the “letter to the faithful in Millbank” rather than to the Philippians . Rejoice. Worship the Lord. Praise our Maker. There are many different ways to give our praise and honour to God. None, I believe, are quite enough. Language is human-based, and we are trying to state the worship of the divine. Paul wrote to the Corinthians, ” that we now see through a glass darkly “. We are always on the way in our faith journey, never quite arriving while living here on this earth. No words can define what God means to us as followers of Jesus the Christ .
” Let your gentleness be evident to all. “. Be nice to everyone. Do good, and do no harm. Be gentle and humble with everyone you meet with today. Even if you are done harm, allow your response , if at all possible, to be one of compassion and love. This is not easy, but this is what we are called to be about in our daily lives. Even when you have a strong opinion, you must think that you might be wrong. This is the way to have a humble and good discussion on any issue within and outside the church.
“Do not be anxious about anything”. We are living in a turbulent time of history. Try not to be anxious or worrisome. The early churches were always under threats of violence. It is a hard thing when you feel anxious about the future. Fear, worry and anxiety can bring confusion to our souls and lives. Bring it to Christ , just as Paul and Timothy did. Petition God in prayer to keep you less fearful during this time of COVID.
And finally, may the peace of Christ guide all that you do. God will guard and guide you in your living out your faith. This ends my short Bible study reflection with the letter to Philippi. It has many one-liners ( that you may have memorized ) that we can reach for in our lives of life and faith. Blessings.