Philippians

Philippians 4:10-21

10 How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for me, but you didn’t have the chance to help me. 11 Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. 12 I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. 13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. 14 Even so, you have done well to share with me in my present difficulty.

15 As you know, you Philippians were the only ones who gave me financial help when I first brought you the Good News and then traveled on from Macedonia. No other church did this. 16 Even when I was in Thessalonica you sent help more than once. 17 I don’t say this because I want a gift from you. Rather, I want you to receive a reward for your kindness.

18 At the moment I have all I need—and more! I am generously supplied with the gifts you sent me with Epaphroditus. They are a sweet-smelling sacrifice that is acceptable and pleasing to God. 19 And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.

20 Now all glory to God our Father forever and ever! Amen

21 Give my greetings to each of God’s holy people—all who belong to Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me send you their greetings.

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How did Paul learn to be content regardless of his circumstances?  I don’t think it is natural to be content.  Our natural state is to be restless, so we have to learn how to be content.  For Paul, and I think for me as well, it has to be based on a complete dependence on Christ.  For if the promise that “my God will supply all my needs” is Paul’s secret to contentment, I must live in the reality of that truth as well.

I feel I did that this month with our finances.  I didn’t fret.  I really just trusted, and at the end of the month, it all came together.   But I also need to learn to generalize my dependence beyond money to our kids and grandkids, and to other parts of my life as well.

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