“For me, living is Christ and dying is gain. Now if I live on in the flesh, this means fruitful work for me; and I don’t know which one I should choose. I am pressured by both. I have the desire to depart and be with Christ — which is far better — but to remain in the flesh is more necessary for you. Since I am persuaded of this, I know that I will remain and continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, so that, because of me, your confidence may grow in Christ Jesus when I come to you again. Just one thing: Live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.” Philippians 1:21-27
We are immensely blessed to have the Word of God at our fingertips!!! It is not merely a book filled with insightful thoughts and experiences but The Word of God! Words He watches over….Words He fulfills because He sent them out to be fruitful…Words of promise.
Unpacking this portion of Philippians, I see powerful truths! If we are living on this earth, THE mission is that we LIVE for Christ. The mission is not a career, a life of being entertained, a life of leisure, a marriage, or raising children, even though these things have a benefit they are not THE mission.
Did you know just as He sent out His Word to be fruitful He also sends out you and I to be fruitful? Therefore, as we live in this sublunary world, as we crucify the flesh and yield to the Spirit, we should expect to be fruitful. This implies that in order to be fruitful we must be doing good works. Luke 8:15 says, “The seed in the good ground ~ these are the ones who, having heard the words with an honest and good heart, hold on to it and by enduring, bear fruit.” Are you holding on to the Word and enduring in your trials expecting to bear fruit in and through them? “Genuine believers continue in the faith and good works throughout their lives. The bearing of fruit (continuing in the faith and good works) is also the evidence of genuine belief named in John 15:5-6, where Jesus said only the branch that bears fruit is saved.” (Holman Study Bible)
Paul said departing and being with Christ is considered by our spirits to be far better but remaining in the vessel of flesh is more necessary for those around us. Do you find this to be true in your life? Is your presence a spiritual benefit to those around you? If this is not the case, there is no condemnation, however, we are called to be a spiritual benefit to those around us so let’s make an effort to do this. Let’s remember Luke 8:16. “No one, after lighting a lamp, covers it with a basket or puts it under a bed, (in other words hides it) but puts it on a lampstand so that those who come in (anyone coming to your house or coming around you) may see its light.” Amen! Be a spiritual blessing to others! This DOES NOT need to resemble how everyone else does it. You are unique ~ follow the guidance of how the Spirit of God leads YOU.
Paul also exhorts us in verse 27-28 to stand firm in one spirit (Spirit of GOD), with one mind (not individual minds but the mind of Christ), working side by side for the faith that comes from the gospel (increasing your faith comes from hearing the gospel), not being frightened in any way by your opponents. This is a sign of destruction for them but of your deliverance – this is from God. We should give no one the authority to allow us to not be fruitful or to not be a spiritual blessing to others.
While you still have strength in your bones, LIVE for the Lord. We know from those who have gone before us, there will come a time when we will not have the strength we have now. Stop waiting for the perfect day. This is the day the Lord has given, therefore there is no need to continue waiting for something else.
Just one more thing DIVAs: Live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.
In His grace alone,