Suffering and Joy
TNIV Scripture for Tuesday, July 1, 2008 [Philippians 19-11]
And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ--to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:9-11 TNIV Bible
Paul wrote this prayer in His letter to the Philippian church (a church he had planted) during his first Roman imprisonment. As you read the entire letter of Philippians, you may notice two repeated words, suffering and joy. The letter is filled with the message of the all-sufficiency of Christ and how in Him there can be joy in suffering in Christ. What a remarkable concept, joy in suffering. God never promised that you would not suffer, in fact, suffering is one of God's best teaching tools in your life. Paul knew that the Philippians would need God's love (agape), knowledge and insight to understand and live this message he wrote to them and he also knew that only God could open their hearts and minds to receive what he had to say. May God cause your love to abound more and more in the knowledge and depth of insight as you seek Him in His word each day so that you will be filled with Christ and be ready when He returns. May all of your suffering be transformed into the joy of the Lord.