Eyes on the Heavenly Prize

Fifth Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, MI

READ : Philippians 3:13-16 I remember an old farmer deftly illustrating the Christian walk by describing the proper way to hand plow a field. The only way to produce long, straight furrows is to keep your eyes fixed on a point at the end of the row. Looking behind you, for whatever reason, will never produce straight rows. If you admire what you’ve accomplished by looking back you will cause the plow to drift off course. Focusing on the plow …

Destination: a Life With Purpose

Fifth Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, MI

READ : Philippians 3:12-14 “Are we almost there, Daddy?” We had just left the great state of Michigan. We were in for a long drive! “Not yet,” I responded, “It’s a long ways to Florida. Look around you. Do you see all of the pretty, uh, road construction?” My wife rescued me, “How about a snack?” An hour passed with 14 more to go. “Let’s think of things we’ll do in Florida,” I suggested. It worked. Let’s face it, long …

Double Identity

Fifth Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, MI

READ : Philippians 3:10-11 We think we know someone and then that person does something we never expect them to do. I wonder if that’s how the disciples felt when Jesus got himself crucified by the very Romans from whom they believed he had come to set them free. They thought they recognized Jesus as the promised Messiah who would set his people free. Then he goes and gets killed! After Jesus’ resurrection when he came to see them, their …

Eyes of Love

Fifth Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, MI

READ : Philippians 3:7-9 Come with Harry and me to the airport where we are meeting the airliner bringing our infant, adopted son to our home from Korea. Finally, he will be home with us! With Chad in our arms and good-byes from friends ringing in our ears, we head for home. While Harry retrieves our car, I set Chad down on a counter. In the age-old ritual of motherhood, I unwrap and gaze at my son, counting his fingers …

Flying Kites

Fifth Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, MI

READ : Philippians 3:4-8 I am the world’s worst kite flyer. I’d be the last person anyone would ask to help fly a kite. So at our house, Dad was the official kite-flying helper. On occasions, when Dad was not home, Chad and Tammi would ask me to help. Because I love my children I was delighted to try flying kites with them. But more laughing usually happened than kite flying. You don’t need to be an expert kite flyer …

What Really Matters

Fifth Reformed Church, Grand Rapids, MI

READ : Philippians 3:1-3 Rejoice in the Lord. Like a golden strand that the weaver blends into his tapestry, so Paul weaves the theme of joy throughout his letter to the Philippians. Joy drips from the pen of Paul as he seeks to encourage his brothers and sisters in Christ. Over and over with heartfelt conviction he reminds them of the one thing that produces joy-you belong to the Lord! New bikes, fast cars, promotions, special awards, a box of …