For I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. Philippians 1:19
During the time of Paul, prisoners had no idea when their case would come up for review by a judge. You could be called up tomorrow and, if convicted, face immediate consequences with no opportunity for appeal. A judgment could be made at 10 am, and you could lose your head at noon. It wasn’t abstract theory when Paul says, “To live is Christ and to die is gain.” He thought about this a lot. He went to bed thinking, “I wonder if tomorrow is the day.”
Paul is at a fork in the road. He may be released from prison, or he may be convicted and given the death penalty. It is a gift to stare at the fork in the road and say whichever way it goes—I hope the name of Jesus is known and honored. Paul takes this approach because he truly believes that to live is Christ. However, many of us might finish that statement differently. We may believe that to live is sports, money, sex, power, fun or adventure. For Paul, these pursuits fall far short in comparison to living with Christ. What we imagine as a worst-case scenario, Paul reimagines as the best-case scenario. In the clip below, Senior Pastor Jeff Manion gives insight to determining, here and now, to set our hearts on Christ no matter what happens when we find ourselves at a fork in the road.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
In your journal, turn to page 18 and write down how you would honestly finish this statement, “To live is….” Ask God to help you truly believe he is enough and invite him to help you apply this to your life.
Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.