Read Philippians 1:1-8.
Have you ever had a friend who encourages you and loves you in a way that lifts you up? Pushes you forward? Helps you endure?
I think the apostle Paul would be a friend like this. He is writing this letter, in prison, in chains, and writing with JOY. He is so grateful that while he is chained up, his friends are out doing the work God has for them to do.
You can feel Paul’s affection for his friends in Philippi. He is so grateful for their partnership, their love for God, and their sharing in God’s grace with him (v.8). If there’s one thing I have learned about the Christian life, it’s that it is not meant to be lived alone.
We need each other. There will be days when we want to give up and crawl in a hole, and we need each other to help us out. We will have circumstances that make us feel chained up and we’ll need others to help us live free. There will be days when we’ll want to shy away in fear or doubt from what God has called us to do, and we’ll need friends to remind us to be “confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (v.6)
We need others to lift us up and push us on. Do you have others to lean on and grow with? Who are the people you would trust to help you in a time of need? Do you have partners in the Gospel? Who do you share in God’s grace with?
1. List some of the reasons Paul is thankful and joyful from these verses.
2. Who is it that completes the “good work” we are doing? Why is this significant?
3. Is there something God has put on your heart, a good work to be done, that you’re not doing out of fear, doubt, insecurity, etc.? Write it out below. Who can you share that with and let them partner with you to help you move forward?
If you are in need of community and others to help you grow, let me know. We are launching a bunch of life groups in September that cultivate these types of friendships or you and I can just go grab coffee 😉