READ : Philippians 1:12-21
It is my eager expectation . . . that Christ will be exalted . . . (v. 20)
When a child is being difficult, a parent in utter frustration may say: “What is it you want?!” It’s exactly the right question to ask ourselves: what is it we want?
Too often our hearts are divided. We don’t want one thing, we want many things. We’re pulled in different directions.
Paul knows what he wants: Christ, and him exalted. “For me to live is Christ,” he writes; he bends every circumstance to serving Christ. He is in prison, yet life is splendid because the imprisonment is helping spread the gospel.
Paul’s passion is, in fact, independent of circumstances. Christ can be exalted in sickness and in health, in plenty and in want, in life and in death. The passion to exalt Christ can turn garbage into gold.
In his commentary, Gordon Fee writes: “One wonders what the people of God might truly be like in our ‘post-modern’ world if we were once again people of this singular passion. Too often for us it is ‘for me to live is Christ—plus work, leisure, accumulating wealth, relationships, etc.’ And if the truth be known, all too often the ‘plus factor’ has become our primary passion.”
The health of the church and our own souls is altogether dependent on whether or not exalting Christ is our primary, singular passion.
Lord Jesus, may our lives glorify you. Amen.