Do everything without complaining and arguing, so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. Hold firmly to the word of life. Philippians 2:15
I both love this one and struggle with it. Anyone with me?! Let's try to break it down a bit.
The goal Paul describes here is to shine like stars in the darkness as we hold onto the Word of life.
One way we shine is by not complaining or arguing. (any moms out there feel like tattooing this to your kids?!)
Anytime I tell myself not to do something, that is what I do. So how can we spin this in the positive? Develop contentment and do conflict well, speaking truth in love.
So let's put it together. When we, by God working in us focus on contentment, speak the truth in love, and walk with integrity, we shine like stars on the backdrop of a dark sky.
Lord God, I pray you would shine your truth brightly through us. May we be people above reproach, full of integrity, love, and contentment. Thank you that you put your light in us.
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Just before the famous 4:13, Paul speaks about how he's learned to be content no matter the circumstances--rich or poor, well fed or hungry. The secret: God gives him strength in ALL circumstances. Paul trusts God to come through no matter what is happening to him
Now that is something I need way more than the strength to cliff dive or stick a landing, the strength to BE CONTENT no matter what.