Prayer: Gracious God, open my eyes and my heart to the wisdom in your Word. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Doing all things—with each other.
13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Does this mean “I can do it myself, with God’s help?” Of cours not. Our devotion writer tells us that Paul’s words are often taken out of context. In context, it means even though Paul was content to live with what he had, he was truly thankful that the Philippians gave of themselves to help Paul.
Our devotion writer explains; “…God, who strengthens Paul, is working through other people. The community at Philippi has been and continues to be deeply significant to Paul’s efforts, precisely because they ‘share’ in Paul’s ‘distress’ (v. 14). One important way God strengthens us is by giving us each other.”
So as we consider the work of our church, or the challenges of our ministry, it is important to keep in mind that God uses all of us, not just the leaders, not just the pastors, not just me to accomplish His purposes. He uses us all of us to help each other.
Prayer; Thank you, God, for the strength we find in community. Help us to embody your strength for one another, through Christ. Amen.”
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
Acknowledgment of the Philippians’ Gift
10 I rejoice in the Lord greatly that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned for me, but had no opportunity to show it. 11 Not that I am referring to being in need; for I have learned to be content with whatever I have. 12 I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me. 14 In any case, it was kind of you to share my distress.
15 You Philippians indeed know that in the early days of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you alone.