From the Well - 7/18/2019

Stars.jpg

Philippians 2:12-18 (NRSV)
12 Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure. 14 Do all things without murmuring and arguing, 15 so that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, in which you shine like stars in the world. 16 It is by your holding fast to the word of life that I can boast on the day of Christ that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. 17 But even if I am being poured out as a libation over the sacrifice and the offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you- 18 and in the same way you also must be glad and rejoice with me.

Dr. Timothy Johnson in his book, Finding God in the Questions says that we compartmentalize our life. He then quotes Scott Peck, who comments on this phenomenon:

Human beings have a remarkable capacity to take things that are related to each other and stick them in separate airtight compartments so they don't rub up against each other and cause them much pain. We're all familiar with the man who goes to church on Sunday morning, believing that he loves God and God's creation and his fellow human beings, but who, on Monday morning, has no trouble with his company's policy of dumping toxic waste in the local stream. He can do this because he has religion in one compartment and his business in another...It is a very comfortable way to operate, but integrity it is not. The word "integrity" comes from the same root as integrate. It means to achieve wholeness, which is the opposite of compartmentalize. Compartmentalization is easy. Integrity is painful. But without it there can be no wholeness.[1]

Earlier in Chapter 2 of Philippians, Paul says that we are to have the same mind as Christ Jesus. In the 15th verse, he says that we are to ". . . shine like stars in the world." Paul is saying that we allow the beauty of Christ's love in our lives to shine through in all things. As Christians, we cannot have our cake and eat it too. We want Jesus on Sunday and then our other life on Monday through Saturday. Paul says we must integrate the demands of the real world with the promptings of our spiritual compass, Jesus Christ. We must do this seven days a week. Think about it.

Matthew

[1]Timothy Johnson, Finding God in the Questions (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2004), 157.