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Rejoice Stand Firm

Rejoice! Stand Firm!

prayer

prayer

Philippians 4:1-9  4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again, I say, rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.    [Phil 4:4-5]

It seems strange that a prisoner incarcerated unfairly would be encouraging the church to rejoice; especially when we consider the conditions Paul faced in a Roman prison would have been worse than any Thai or Malaysian prison we might see on TV news today.

But Paul’s positive attitude teaches us an important lesson: our inner attitudes don’t have to reflect our outer circumstances. Paul was filled with joy because he was certain that no matter what happened to him, Christ lived in him and he lived in Christ.

It’s easy to become discouraged when we’re faced with unpleasant or unwelcome circumstances that seem without end. Little things can seem larger than we can handle, and we’re reminded again of our helplessness and our total dependence on Christ.

To rejoice in the Lord and to give thanks in all things is to live in the full knowledge that our Lord is always near. Paul knew this, lived this, and did his best to remind other believers that in the midst of shifting circumstances we need not fear anything:

6Don’t worry about anything, but pray about everything. With thankful hearts offer up your prayers and requests to God.7And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. [4:6-7]

Thanksgiving is a virtue that flows from the belief that God is always with us, and gives us exactly what we need to do his will. It’s not what happens to us that matters – rather, how we respond to what happens. For in Christ we find our strength to overcome anything.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  [4:13]

Hear the sermon

 

BULLETIN INSERT   Lismore Anglican Parish

9.30am Lismore, 6.30pm Goonellabah     Sunday 26th August 2012

 

Philippians 4:1-9  [NRSV]

1Therefore, my brothers and sisters,whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, my beloved.

2 I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. 3Yes, and I ask you also, my loyal companion, help these women, for they have struggled beside me in the work of the gospel, together with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are in the book of life.

4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8 Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.

 

John 6: 56-59 NRSV

jesus and his disciples

jesus and his disciples

56Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me, and I in them. 57Just as the living Father sent me, and I live because of the

Father, so whoever eats me will live because of me. 58This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like that which your ancestors ate, and they died. But the one who eats this bread will live forever.’ 59He said these things while he was teaching in the synagogue at Capernaum.

 

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