Philippians 2:1-6 (HCSB)
1 If then there is any encouragement in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, 2 fulfill my joy by thinking the same way, having the same love, sharing the same feelings, focusing on one goal. 3 Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. 4 Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.
5 Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus, 6 who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be used for His own advantage.
This morning I taught about this passage (the entire passage was 2:1-11) to some of our University students at my church. For about six months now, I have been helping teach this group, and it’s so interesting to hear their opinions on different topics! These verses especially impact us because they remind us to think outside of our normal pattern of thought. It reminds us that we must consider other’s outcomes before our own.
A good point that was brought up during discussion was the topic of self care. It is super important to make sure that you are functioning mentally, spiritually, emotionally, and physically. This will allow you to become a fountain of encouragement for someone else. If you happen to be in a place where you don’t have the energy to give to others, maybe that’s a season where you can receive from the gifts of others. Just remember: It’s not bad to BE in a time in your life where you are not able to give. But don’t stay there! Find an area where you can serve God with your talents and at your own capacity.
When I was younger this passage in Philippians became one of my focus verses. I wanted to begin to see others from the Lord’s perspective, which is at times way outside of how I would normally view people. As I’ve grown in the Lord and learned more about how He sees people, my point of view has become less judgmental based on my perceptions. I try (sometimes unsuccessfully, might I add!) to see other people based on where they are coming from. What have they experienced in life that might cause them to react this way?
I do need to explain that I don’t automatically think this way! This is a PROCESS that I think I will always be learning, stretching myself, and listening to others. God is teaching me that my responsibility here on earth is to give Him the glory!
What is a verse that means something in your life? Why is it special?
And…just for fun:
Secretariat image (featured) from, http://www.newsday.com/sports/horseracing/belmont-stakes/american-pharoah-joins-triple-crown-winners-in-horse-racing-1.203130