Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents.
More about Philippians 1:27-28a
Written by Kellye Schiffner Carver (First 5 Ministries)
If you have a hard time envisioning yourself as a citizen of the Kingdom of God, you’re not alone. It sometimes feels easier to see ourselves as a resident of our city, state, territory or country – tangible places we can see with addresses we can write down. However, I love 19th-century theologian Alexander MacLaren’s writings on this:
“In the degree in which he is a Christian, he is a stranger here and a native of the heavens. That great City is, like some of the capitals of Europe, built on a broad river, with the mass of the metropolis on the one bank, but a wide-spreading suburb on the other. As the Trastevere is to Rome, as Southwark to London, so is earth to heaven, the bit of the city on the other side the bridge. As Philippi was to Rome, so is earth to heaven, the colony on the outskirts of the empire,… separated by sounding seas, but keeping open its communications, and one in citizenship. Be it our care, then, to keep the sense of that city beyond the river vivid and constant. “
May we keep the Kingdom of God vivid and constant in the world.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for the words of Scripture. Sometimes they surprise me with their relevance to what we experience today. I love how you gave Paul words that would still be so pertinent to us. When we feel dismissed, minimized or persecuted as a Christian, help us remember to stand strong in faith and unity. Please remind me that in You, we have nothing to fear. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Journal Prompt: How might your choices, your lifestyle or your relationships show (or not show) your faith to others? How could you improve in one of these areas?