Don’t do anything for selfish purposes, but with humility think of others as better than yourselves. Instead of each person watching out for their own good, watch out for what is better for others. – Philippians 2:3-4
Wow! What a delicious North Carolina morning! The temperature just made it to 60-degrees when I went out for my morning walk, so it was light-jacket time and I have to tell you it felt so good.
This is the beautiful thing about seasons. Just when you think it has been too hot and too oppressive for too long, and that sense of Florida relentlessness begins to creep in, a few days of random coolness comes along and you know it’s going to be all right.
So I opened up the house to fill our home with fresh air. There’s a breeze too this morning, and when I raised my study windows to sweep off the cobwebs it felt like drinking a glass of cold water.
My study was, in a sense, thirsty for fresh air. Maybe my writing is too.
God parts the skies and speaks clearly:
Consistently – along with remembering to actually live my faith in the moment-to-moment reality of everyday life – it is the scriptures that pour fresh air and new life into my understanding and my relationship with God.
Take today’s verse. I love Philippians and I read it often. But when I ran across Philippians 2:2-4 in Bible Gateway this morning (it is today’s verse of the day) it spoke so clearly into the politics of public life – as if God had parted the skies, leaned in, and said in the clearest possible voice, “THIS is what it means to be a Christian both holding and seeking public office. Please either be this way or for goodness sake leave my name out if it!”
Let’s go over this just a line at a time:
- “Don’t do anything for selfish purposes.”
- “With humility think of others as better than yourselves.”
- “Instead of each person watching out for their own good, watch out for what is better for others.”
- “Unselfishness” – it’s not about me.
- “Humility” – it’s not about me.
- “Put the good of others ahead of our own” – it’s not about me.
This passage goes on the encourage Christians to have the same approach to life that Jesus did: “Instead of each person watching out for their own good, watch out for what is better for others. Adopt the attitude that was in Christ Jesus…” (vv 4-5)
Jesus did not exploit his equality with God but instead emptied himself, took the role of a servant, and when he found himself not just equal with God but equal with women and men he responded by humbling himself…. (vv6-8, author paraphrase)
Let’s open the windows to our hearts and let the fresh, cleansing, invigorating breeze of God’s spirit in. Read the scriptures!
And how about this. Try introducing a politician you know, or follow, to the truth about Jesus.
Jesus emptied himself, took on the role of a servant, and humbled himself. “Adopt the attitude that was – that is – in Christ Jesus!”
In love, and because this nation so desperately needs to understand love – DEREK