“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! “(Philippians 4:4 NIV)
A statement of someone whose life is in a pretty good place, right? WRONG! It is a statement of an imprisoned Paul. Doesn’t make sense does it? What was Paul’s secret? How can a man left for dead on more than one occasion, imprisoned and close to the end of his life have such a joy in his spirit?
Paul lets out his secret in Philippians 3:5-11. In verses 5 and 6 Paul gives us a CV that in those days was more impressive than a blond getting a sience joke. His accomplishments would have left people astounded.
We find in Phil 3:7-11 that Paul’s life was defined by something else. If Paul’s life were defined by his accomplishments and what society sees as impressive, he would have never been able to go through all the trials and setbacks he faced. Life happens, things change, people come and go and material things will be lost. If your life is defined by those things, once you lose it, it will feel like your whole life is falling apart and you lose all hope you have.
Paul’s ability to keep perspective when things were falling apart was what got him through tough times. He lived for one thing, and one thing only… To know God! Not to just know about God! It was the center of his life and he knew God would make all things work together for good.
the meaning behind my tattoo
In my own life my abilities and accomplishments defined me, I had to give up all MY dreams to follow God’s dream and calling for my life. Now I look back, and what seemed like a sacrifice back then, I now consider a gain cause I’ve never been more content than I am right now.
What defines your life? Degrees? Accomplishments? Looks? Boyfriend/girlfriend? Money? Popularity? Let knowing God be what defines you. And you will have the courage and strength to make it through tough times when they come!