Philippians – Radical Joy
Who is that person who has stuck by you through thick and thin? Who are those persons who love you no matter what mood you are in, what you say to them, or how you respond to their love for you? How long has it been since you thanked God for them? How long has it been since you told them what their tenacious love has meant to your life? Well, that’s too long!!
Paul, inspired by God, with the great love of Christ exuding from every fiber of his being, shows us how to express our love and joy for another brother or sister.
Philippians 1, The Message
3-6 Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God. Each exclamation is a trigger to prayer. I find myself praying for you with a glad heart. I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God’s Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.
7-8 It’s not at all fanciful for me to think this way about you. My prayers and hopes have deep roots in reality. You have, after all, stuck with me all the way from the time I was thrown in jail, put on trial, and came out of it in one piece. All along you have experienced with me the most generous help from God. He knows how much I love and miss you these days. Sometimes I think I feel as strongly about you as Christ does!
AND this is how we lovingly pray for each other:
9-11 So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well. Learn to love appropriately. You need to use your head and test your feelings so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush. Live a lover’s life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God.
This is my prayer for all you who are reading this each day, for those of you I hold dear to my heart, for those who stuck with me and loved me still with the deep love of Christ. I love you, too!
In Jesus Name, Amen