Sunday, February 21, 2021
Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit, striving together as one for the faith of the gospel …— Philippians 1:27 NIV
At first glance, we are not sure whether the word “Spirit” in this passage should be capitalized. Further contemplation, however, reveals to me that having it capitalized is correct. As we’ve read these past few days, the love we share for each other and the unity that we have in Christ are inspired and empowered by the Holy Spirit. We stand together, we are part of the same family, because of the bond we share together in the Holy Spirit. Our strength to strive for common goals and to make every effort to be one comes from the unifying power and presence of the Holy Spirit. The love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control we have in our lives come because of the presence of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). So now, let’s seek to let the Spirit’s influence mold us and shape us so we can work together for the sake of the good news of Jesus.
Almighty God, whatever happens in my life, I want to honor you, share Jesus, and display the fruit of the Spirit. I want to bless your people and stand together in unity with them, working for the cause of the gospel. So I ask for your help to honor this commitment, to keep it foremost in my heart, and not to be distracted or deterred by disappointment, hardship, heartache, or my own fleshly desires. I ask for this grace in the name and by the power of Jesus Christ. Amen.