Philippians // Partners in Grace

Images by Beautiful Light Photography

Images by Beautiful Light Photography

Bible verse 1: Philippians 1:6

Bible verse 2: 1 Corinthians 1:8-9

Friends, I know we’ve just met, but I have a secret to tell you. Let’s keep it between us, okay? 

Here it goes.

I’m a serial procrastinator.

Those essays on my desk to grade? They’re from last month.

The quilt I started making for my daughter when I found out I was pregnant? It’s abandoned half finished in a closet…and my daughter is sixth months old.

Don’t even get me started about cleaning out the refrigerator!

But Paul in his introduction to the Philippians is confident that the good work being done in them will be completed. And that’s the same confidence we as followers of Christ should have. 

It’s crazy for me to think sometimes that God plans on using me to do anything for His Kingdom. I can hardly put the dishes away in a timely manner, and yet I know God will use me for His glory if I just say “yes” to him. But the secret here is that this good work done in us is not done by us. God is the one who began the good work in us and He is the one who will complete it. Even if it seems like you are constantly making mistakes, even if you are a serial procrastinator like me, even if you are constantly leaving things undone, as Paul tells the Corinthians "God is faithful, and by him you were called to fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” Trust in God’s faithfulness. You are called. You don’t need to fret about your purpose in life. God has plans for you, and even though you are an imperfect instrument, He chooses you to bring about His kingdom. And God in his goodness doesn’t leave us to our own devices, but promises to see it through with us to the end. How great is our God?

As we continue to read through Philippians this theme of God’s strength and ability to work through imperfect people and unlikely circumstance will be repeated time and time again. At the time that this letter was written, Paul was in prison, unsure if death was coming for him, yet joy and confidence abound in his words to the Philippians. Paul could have seen his situation as a failure, he could have been frustrated that due to his imprisonment he was losing time to travel and evangelize, but instead Paul sees even this as the work of God.

So take heart! Like Paul pray with thanksgiving and joy because the gospel is a partnership and we are all part of it. Praise God for allowing us, imperfect as we are, to have a role in His work of salvation! 

My prayer for you, dear sister, is that over the course of these two weeks you begin to cultivate an attitude of joy. And that begins in discovering that God has chosen you to do His work; that despite how desperately unqualified we are, He continues to aid us, to bring our work to fruition unto to the very end. Rejoice!

Reflection question 1: When was a time that you felt unqualified to do the work of God, but that God still managed to work through you? 

Reflection question 2: How can understanding that God has started a good work in you change the way you see yourself and others?

Act: Today I challenge you to see opportunities to go out of your way to do good works for others. Be sure to praise God for the opportunity to bring about His kingdom! 

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