What’s Going On Here?


The world is a scary place right now.Golden Gate Bridge - San Francisco, CA

Wars, rumors of wars, riots, racism, political debates (and I’m not talking about the candidates), shootings, random acts of terror…

How do we think about all the bad news?

In 61 A.D. in the prosperous Roman colony of Philippi, the people may have been wondering the same thing. Their mentor, Paul, was in prison in Rome (actually under house arrest) for telling people about Jesus so they sent him some gifts to encourage him. In a letter thanking those generous souls, Paul also wrote to encourage them to hang in there no matter what circumstances were.

Here’s a look at what Paul had to say:

Paul:

What has happened to me has really served to advance the good news about Jesus. (1:12) (Modern vernacular: It’s all good, bro.)

What this means for me:

No matter how hard or bad circumstances are, God will use them in a good way to do something great in us or through us.

Paul:

What has happened to me will turn out for deliverance. (1:19)

What this means for me:

Sometimes my difficult circumstances help free someone else from bad things in their life when they can see how I handle them. Those same situations can also cause me to gain a different perspective about my life, thus freeing me from life-long, harmful misconceptions.

Paul:

Whatever happens conduct yourself in a worthy manner. (1:27)

What this means for me:

It’s easy to get scared, frustrated or worried when bad things happen. But I need to be careful how I act and what I say so that others will be helped by my attitude, not hindered by it. If I can remember the two previous points, they should help my focus stay on God where I’ll find peace, calm and an eventual solution.

Paul:

Stand firm without being frightened. (1:28)

What this means for me:

If Paul can keep his cool and not be scared in prison when he’s done nothing wrong, I can trust that God’s got my back too. The more I think about the magnitude of God and the bigger picture, the less frightened I’ll be.

That’s the good news.

 

What frightens you most about today’s world? How are you coping with the growing turmoil?


5 thoughts on “What’s Going On Here?

  1. Thanks, Laura! Great reminder and encouragement! Reading verse 29, “For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him…”. We know hard times will come as believers, but we can have His peace 4:6,7 as He guards our hearts and minds. Easier said than done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks my friend! Yes, he guards our hearts and minds. Sometimes it is very hard to rest in that when we are suffering. Thinking of those suffering the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew and praying for God’s peace in the midst of tragedy.

      Like

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