We had a few health 'challenges' in 2008, so we're praying for a calmer year.
As we've shared our 'journey' with you, we hope that it hasn't come across negatively.
We pray that our response to those challenges was helpful to someone along the way.
Though we had a few trying times, we've not had to face the difficulties some of our friends have experienced. Several lost dear ones in death while others are critically ill or are facing other trials.
We have a little plaque in our kitchen which reads:
"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee." (Isaiah 26:3)
My favorite coffee cup is inscribed with:
"I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me." (Phil. 4:13)
La Moyne's favorite cup has "He Chose The Nails" with the Cross painted in the background...while on the other side of that cup is "He Did It Just For You".
Another favorite says "One Day At A Time".
These cups remind us of Him and help to point us in the right direction each day.
In order to be strengthened BY Him, we need to KNOW Him..
so I'd like to share these thoughts with you.
You may can tell that I was a high school teacher/coach before I entered the Pastoral Ministry :)
but I thought that this Study Guide might be helpful as we begin a New Year.
Philippians 3: Know The Person - Jesus: (v.10a)
~as Lord (1:2)
~Complete in Him (1:6)
~Coming Christ (1:10)
~Center of our Gospel (v. 15-17)
~To be glorified by us (v. 20)
~To suffer for Him (v. 29)
~Have the mind of Christ (2:5-11)
~Rids us of pride (3:1-8)
We come to know Jesus as we know our parents by:
~Being born into the family
~Growing in a warm fellowship
~Listening to their words
~Following their example
It is the joy of continual discovery (Phil. 3:9 and Col. 2:3)
Experience The Power - Holy Spirit (v.10b)
~ Power of life
~ Power of God
~ Power for good
~ Defensive power (garrison or fortress)
~ Offensive power (Eph. 6:17)
All of this is backed by The Crucifixion and The Resurrection.
Fellowship in The Passion - love (v.10c)
~Christ's sufferings - Luke 1:80; Luke 2:49-51; Matt. 16:21; Luke 23
~We as servants are not above our Master
Conform to The Pattern - Christlikeness (v.10d) This is both active and passive.
~Conform to His life - Phil. 1:21; 2:5-11
~Conform to His death - Give up everything - Go all the way - Love unselfishly
~See Phil. 3:11-14 for emphasis on 'Realizing our Potential'.
Rejoice in The Position "In Christ": (Phil. 4:4)
~In Christ - Paul's favorite subject. John likened it to 'vine and branches' in John 15.
~In Joy -
Not dependent on where you are, but 'Whose you are'......
not what you've got, but Who has you!
Witness through patience - (v.5)
~See also your concordance on patience, long-suffering and forbearance.
~Spiritual addition (including patience) is a must. See II Peter 1: 1-9
Make much of Prayer - (v.6)
~Prayer of faith - (v.6a)
~Pray about anything - (v.6b)
~Prayer of Thanksgiving - (v.6c) Phil. 1: 3-4
Enjoy The Peace - (v.7)
~From God (v.7a)
~By faith (v.7b)
~For whole body - (v.7c)
~Available through Christ - (v.7d)
~See verse 9 also
Be sure you are pure - (v.8)
~In mind - true, honest, just, lovely, good report and virtuous.
~In motive - Bible calls it 'the single eye'.....and 'singleness of heart'.
~Jesus said 'The only way to see God was from a pure heart'. Matt: 5:8
Obey the Principles - (v.9)
~They are eternal
~They are relevant
~Not 'situation ethics', but knowing the ethics (principles) BEFORE the situation arises.
Claim the Promises -
~Brings contentment - (v.11-12)
~Gives strength (v.13)
~Supplies all your needs (v.19)
In the Feb. 1964 edition of 'Beam' magazine, author Barbara Johnson was quoted:
"When do we really live?
When do we find fulfillment and come to see what life is really meant to be?
When we have a faith fit to live by....
a self fit to live with...
a work fit to live for....
and someone to love and be loved.
When we learn how to use time and not just kill it...
when we want less....
love more and lend a helping hand to others.
When we are wise enough to live one day at a time, letting yesterday go and not living tomorrow until it arrives.
When we have read great books of vision and beauty....
when we know and live by the one Great Book, letting it guide and dominate our lives.
When we know how to:
~live with God and serve Him.
Most of all, we learn how to live when we don't take life for granted, but for gratitude."
D.L. Moody said:
"Trust in yourself....and you are doomed to disappointment.
Trust in your friends....and they will die and leave you.
Trust in money....and you may have it taken from you.
Trust in reputation....and some slanderous tongue may blast it.
But trust in God and you will never to be confounded in time....nor Eternity."
We pray that you and your's will have a BLESSED New Year!
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