Shine like Stars….

FireFlys

In Philippians 2 we are told that when are able to successfully imitate the life and attitude of Christ our Lord in our own lives we then shine like stars in a dark and perverse generation.

Let this attitude be in you — just as it was in Christ.

...make my joy complete(C) by being like-minded,(D)

Not that we agree at every point — but that our common goal is to see the mission of Christ (making disciples) completed successfully.  We will all make disciples differently — because we relate to people differently.  Some are “party people” with lots of friends and impact on many — often all the same time.  Others are more reserved and may only have 2-3 deep friendships over a lifetime – but will be deeply impacted by, and will deeply impact, those few they call “friend”.

having the same love, being one(E) in spirit and of one mind.

3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.(F) Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,(G) not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.(H)

Harder than it looks …. putting others first.  When we seek to advance our own agenda has the overriding goal of life we are bound to be disappointed.   There is always as Andy Stanley says someone who is more “er” than us.   Pretty — ER,  Fast — ER, Rich — ER, Stronger — ER, Famous — ER …. well you get the idea.

But when our goal in life is to see those around us succeed and we spend our lives pouring ourselves out on their behalf — we won’t fail.   Maybe no one will notice, or thank us, or pay us — but we will know we have done what Christ called us to do.  Lose our lives in the service of others…..

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:(I)

Who, being in very nature[a] God,(J)
    did not consider equality with God(K) something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing(L)
    by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,(M)
    being made in human likeness.(N)
And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death(O)
        even death on a cross!(P)

Serving others isn’t a good career move.  Nor is it very often a path to riches and fame.  Yet all those things are fleeting.   In the context of the first 30-40 years AD Jesus was not one to be considered successful.  But as one who poured himself out for others — for all others — he is the one we still talk about and around whom all history is dated (BC / AD, etc).  Do you want your time on earth to have eternal significance?

Then be like Jesus…..

Therefore God exalted him(Q) to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,(R)
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,(S)
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,(T)
11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,(U)
    to the glory of God the Father.

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