Howdy y'all! Is anyone getting sick of winter yet? I know it isn't Spring just yet, but this snow and cold is too much for me.
Our church has had the privilege of having an intern pastor for the last seven months. At first it wasn't a privilege at all because we had two pastors leave who we all love and respected. Then this pastor came to fill in and he has been a blessing. I have always looked forward to Sundays and with him here I look forward even more. The sermons always just leave you in awe of God and humble yourself spirit real quick. Last Sunday the sermon seemed all too short because it was filled with so much. I hope I can share it without ruining the whole thing.
Paul starts off this little section by him saying "I rejoiced in the Lord...". Just six verses before this he told the Philippians to rejoice, "Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say rejoice.". He isn't just a preacher, he lives what he preaches. He puts it into practice. Rejoicing in God changes your attitude towards others. You become caring and loving just as the Philippians did towards Paul, "You were indeed concerned for me...". He is seeing their change. He is rejoicing that there is a mutual love in him and them. That is what he has been working for.
In verses 11 and 12, it sounds like Paul is talking about money, but he isn't. He is talking about them caring for him personally. Paul has lived through quite a bit in his lifetime. He knows how to get along. What he is talking about here is the joy of having someone care for him. Paul knows how to survive, but what he wants is for someone to be concerned for him. God produces this concern in us for people. God makes us see we aren't the only ones in this world. People need to feel cared for. Humans need love. Our hearts need to be open to others. We need to see when others are having a bad day and give them encouragement.
Verse 13 sums up this section. Paul is not saying God gives you power to do things. God isn't the spinach Popeye eats. Paul is saying he can suffer through anything through Christ who strengthens him. He can be content in any situations he is thrown into because he has God. He doesn't need money because he has God. We need to be content like Paul. We have what we need, but we don't have what we want most of the time. Your wants won't help you live any better, God will though.
That is why he rejoices in God!
I hope that made sense and that I didn't mess it all up. I get so excited talking about what I learn on Sundays it becomes all mumble jumbled.
God bless you all!