Text: Philippians 1:12-26
Theme: Paul had confidence in God and trusted him with every step in his life.
Key verses: “And I want you to know…that everything that has happened to me here has helped to spread the Good News. For everyone here, including the whole palace guard, knows that I am in chains because of Christ” (v. 12-13). “But that doesn’t matter. Whether their motives are false or genuine, the message about Christ is being preached either way, so I rejoice. For I know that as you pray for me and the Spirit of Jesus Christ helps me, this will lead to my deliverance. For I fully expect and hope that will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die” (v. 18-20). “I’m torn between two desires: I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me. But for your sakes, it is better that I continue to live. Knowing this, I am convinced that I will remain alive so I can continue to help all of you grow and experience the joy of your faith” (v. 23-25).
What God said to me: Good morning. Good to have you focus this morning on me and my Word. There is no way for you to gain the kind of confidence rooted in trust that Paul had without investing much time alone with me and in my Word. The message today is simple. Paul was in prison, in the most uncomfortable and unbearable of circumstances; yet, he never lost faith in me and my plan for his life. Dwayne, you have been worried and burdened down lately about finances and family matters. Why would you lose sleep over your future when I hold all your tomorrows in my hand? I love you with an everlasting love. My mercy endures forever. Live today to glorify me and invest in your family and ministry. Let me take care of your next week and next year. I will provide and guide your every step. I love your family more than you do. I will not abandon them or forsake, just like I have never forsaken you. Be determined and trust that your life will bring honor to my Son, whether you live or die. Don’t get caught up in arguments or distractions over the motives of those who preach my gospel. Check their doctrine and message for accuracy, of course. But never be envious of those who preach or share the truth. Focus on the goal that my Good News be spread and embraced by those who need to hear of my love. Be glad my name and Word are being spread. And more than anything, keep yourself pure and blameless and in tune with me each and every day. This is your responsibility. See you to it.
What I said to God: Holy and awesome loving Father, You are my Source and Supply and the Shepherd of my soul. I am nothing without You and most desperate. Thank You for giving up on me and not abandoning me. Thank You for forgiving me over and over and showing such great mercy and grace toward me and my family. Help me know You more and love You deeper and with greater devotion. Forgive me for worrying about things I can’t control. I commit the ReFOCUS Conference to you and the mission trips. You know how much and who we need for those, and I know You will provide for what You initiated. I commit my family, my wife and sons, into Your hands and ask that You guide and protect them. I praise You for being my Lord and my God.