Friday 20th October 2020
GOD STRENGTHENS US KEEP EXPECTING AND BE STRONG.
TEXT:-Phil 4:13,1:20;IITim 4:17.
“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”
Philippians 4:13 KJV
“According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.”
Philippians 1:20 KJV
“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”
Galatians 6:9 KJV
“Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.”
2 Timothy 4:17 KJV
What does Philippians chapter 4 mean? It speaks of Christ’s strength in times of suffering most especially at this pandemic period.This includes prayers and encouragement (Philippians 4:1–9) and a focus on God’s provision (Philippians 4:10–20), followed by a short conclusion (Philippians 4:21–23).
Verse 1 actually concludes Paul’s previous passage, from the end of chapter 3, with an encouragement to “stand firm” in the Lord.
In verses 2–3, he mentions Euodia and Syntyche, two women in the Philippian church involved in some kind of disagreement. He urges them to “agree in the Lord.” Paul then refers to a person called the “true companion,” asking him to help the women, Clement, and the rest of his workers (Philippians 4:3).
Paul then transitions to a focus on rejoicing in the Lord (Philippians 4:4). Christians are not to be anxious about anything, but instead to bring prayers of all kinds to the Lord (Philippians 4:6). This does not mean a total lack of thought. Rather, it means a lack of fear or anxiety. The peace of God protects (Philippians 4:7). Paul also encourages his readers to focus on things that are good (Philippians 4:8). This includes all they had learned and received and heard and seen in Paul (Philippians 4:9). The Philippian Christians are instructed to think about them, and to apply them, knowing God’s peace would be with them (Philippians 4:9).
The second part of this passage focuses on God’s provision (Philippians 4:10–20). Paul rejoices that the Philippian believers were now helping him again financially (Philippians 4:10). He did not write this because he was greedy, or desperate. Instead, he had learned how to be content in all situations (Philippians 4:11). He knew how to be content either in abundance or in need (Philippians 4:12), claiming he could do all things through Christ who strengthens him (Philippians 4:13).
Paul refers to their kindness in helping him during his time of trouble (Philippians 4:14). The church in Philippi was the first to help him financially, not once, but on multiple occasions (Philippians 4:15–17). Paul says he is well supplied as a result of the gifts Epaphroditus had brought to him from the Philippians. He considers them as a “fragrant offering” to the Lord (Philippians 4:18).
The final section of this chapter provides a brief conclusion (Philippians 4:21–23). Paul tells his readers to greet “every saint in Christ Jesus” and that the believers with him send their greetings (Philippians 4:21). This included “especially those of Caesar’s household” (Philippians 4:22), referring to some who served the emperor who had become believers in Christ. The final verse resembles many of Paul’s other letters, stating, “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.” Paul starts and ends his letter with a focus on grace from Jesus, the one who offers everything necessary to both know and follow the Lord.
We are highly encouraged to Keep expecting.
How do you live in such a way that God can do immeasurably more in you and through you than you could ever imagine?
First, we identify our priorities. Then, we choose to make room for more of God by fasting. After that, we choose to put God first every day through the practice of spiritual disciplines. Finally, we expect God to move.
The truth? God created you for a purpose. He wants you to have a rich and satisfying life. He is inviting you to become the kind of person who can bring a little bit of heaven to Earth.
The problem? So many of us aren’t convinced that God could ever use us. The idea of God doing immeasurably more through us can sometimes feel unlikely, and for some of us it feels completely impossible. Maybe it’s because of the bad things we’ve done, the bad things that have been done to us, the challenges we’ve experienced in our homes, or the struggles we face every day. So many of us have had the hope beaten out of us to the point that expecting God to move in us seems like a kid’s dream instead of a real possibility.
God wants you to dream again. He wants you to believe, maybe for the first time, what He believes about you. God is inviting you to imagine and to expect what could be and what should be. And God wants you to keep expecting. He wants you to keep believing. He wants you to have hope.
Let your fast make room in your heart and in your mind for more of God by starving the doubts, the fears, and the insecurities you’ve been living with. Let your worship of God feed your imagination and your expectation for God to move. And keep expecting. Keep dreaming. Keep believing. Why? Because God can, and He will, do immeasurably more through you than you could ever ask, think, or imagine.
So, will you make room? Will you put God first? Will you keep expecting?
Challenge: Keep expecting. Stay strong with your fast and do something every day to put God first for the next two weeks! If you miss one day, commit to not missing two. Have grace for yourself (because God has grace for you) and get back at it! You will therefore move from Pity to Praise as the Lord stood at your side and gave you strength. 2 Timothy 4:17 The apostle Paul seemed to need a coat, when he wrote Timothy, “Bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas” (2 Timothy 4:13). Held in a cold Roman prison, Paul needed warmth but also companionship. “No one came to my support, but everyone deserted me,” he lamented, when he faced a Roman judge (v. 16). His words pierce our hearts with the honesty of this great missionary’s pain.
Yet in these final words of Paul’s last recorded letter—his closing thoughts after an astounding ministry—he moves from pity to praise. “But the Lord stood at my side,” he adds (v. 17), and his words rally our hearts. As Paul declared, “[God] gave me strength so that I might preach the Good News in its entirety for all the Gentiles to hear. And he rescued me from certain death” (v. 17 nlt).
If you’re facing a crisis, lacking even the right clothing for warmth or close friends to help, remember God. He’s faithful to revive, provide, and deliver. Why? For His glory and for our purpose in His kingdom.
In what “cold” area of your life do you need God’s great and warming strength? As you praise Him, how does your outlook
Our strong God, please empower me to follow You through Jesus. May Your strength stir in my heart a genuine love for those I encounter.
When life’s circumstances overwhelm us, stand with us, stir our praise, giving us Your strength to overcome I ask this in Your precious name