This morning, I attended the women’s bible study at my church. We read through the book of Philippians. The book was written by Paul, while he was in prison.
Paul was converted by God. It was a complete and utter transformation from murdering Christians to sharing the gospel. His letters are books in the bible. We read his letters today and quote them. Paul’s letters are an inspiration. Paul’s letters can bring tears to our eyes, as we see ourselves in his words.
God transformed Paul. God can transform us too.
Sometimes, I feel like I am the only one struggling to get through situations in life. This is not the case. This morning, the pastor’s wife shared with us something that she was trying to change in herself. I look around and see righteous, perfect, people. The truth is that none of us are perfect.
I am struggling to deal with my mom’s stage 4 cancer diagnosis of Glioblastoma. She had surgery to remove a brain tumor. That is not all. I have so many concerns.
Some worries turned out well. My daughter had an ultrasound to see if her lymph nodes in her neck were cancerous. She was cancer free. Praise God for my little girl! I had an ultrasound on my leg, to see if I had a blood clot. No blood clot was found. Praise God! I want to be around for my kids.
The pastor’s wife said today that sometimes we have to go through the fiery furnace to remove all the things holding us back. (See more on Daniel: There Is No Need For An Explanation and God Knows What Lies In The Darkness)
We will have pain and suffering. We will have to suffer for the sake of Jesus Christ. Paul wrote this verse in prison. Paul knew that Christ suffered for us, so our sins would be forgiven. Paul knew that his words during suffering would serve as an inspiration to others. Our thoughts and words can be a testimony to others too.
For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, having the same conflict which you saw in me and now hear is in me.
–Philippians 1:29-30 (NKJV)
As we go through difficult times, God is giving us an opportunity to be a testimony to others. God is refining us and getting rid of all the things holding us back from fully following Christ.
Sometimes, we have to learn to be content in every situation. It does not come easily. We have to learn to be content.
Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content
–Philippians 4:11 (NKJV)
Before we walk into a fiery furnace, we have to let go and trust in God. We have to trust that God will get us through the outcome, good or bad. We have to surrender to God’s will. We may come out unharmed, or we may not. We have to praise God in every circumstance. I must learn to be content, even when the world is exploding around me. My faith must be bigger than my fear.