It is kind of a misty, drizzly day here in Texas this morning. We need all the moisture we can get so I am not complaining. It just does not make for a bright and cheery photo from the backyard. Except for the oleander in the foreground there is not a hint of green, of life. I know some of us are feeling much like that. We struggle with pain, both physical and emotional. We have hearts that are bruised, wounded one way or another. Maybe life looks bleak because we are out of work, or alone. Personally I am in the grip of grief over the loss of one who was very special to me. Tears are so near the surface and my mind is filled with memories of a precious friend and mentor. But I press on. That is what Paul tells us to do in the book of Philippians. That is where I have decided to immerse myself for the coming weeks.
I read a little article about the best way to study the Bible. So many have so many thoughts on this subject. I cannot attest to it being "the best" but I have decided to give it a whirl this year. So today I sat down with Philippians and read it straight through three times. It is a short book of just four chapters; in my Bible it takes up just 5 pages. Next week I plan to begin a SOAP study through this book that I will share on the Sitting at His Feet page of this site. Until then I will be reading it straight through several more times. I am excited. I thought about sharing a few verses that jumped out at me as I read, but so many did that I would be sitting here writing for much longer than I intended. Instead I will share the few, that jumped out every time: "Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." (If you have known grief you know the wonderful power of the peace that God gives.) "For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus." (That is exciting!) "Do all things without grumbling or disputing." (Oh dear, I am not sure I like where that one is going right now...) "To write the same things is no trouble to me,and it is a safeguard to you." (Can it be that we need to be reminded over and over for our own benefit of some of the very basic things regarding the riches we have in Christ?) "I press on towards the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Even on those dreariest of days I need to press on- I have so much more to say, but you will just have to wait until we get to chapter 3 verse 14 for the rest of the story.)
Someone most dear to me responded with this after reading my post yesterday regarding my statement about Pinterest being a dangerous place with "lots of photos to inspire you and every once in a while I actually follow through with some ideas"
This is one of the reasons we should live in the community of brothers and sisters in Christ. As we share in their lives as they seek to serve God, one of their examples might just inspire others to ‘actually follow through with some ideas’. Similarly, I believe we should share our stories, thereby we might encourage some brother or sister in Christ to follow our example of serving Our Lord.
Perhaps that is why this next verse stood out today. "Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us." (I am certainly no Paul, but I do hope you will be encouraged to follow my example and dig deeper into this book and learn from what Paul has to share.)
Grace and peace to you,
I am a wife, a mother, a quilter, and most of all a follower of Jesus Christ.
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