This is the third in my series of lectio divina meditations on Philippians. What stood out for me in this chapter is:
“Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.” Philippians 3:12
The “this” the apostle Paul is speaking of, is his attempt to imitate Christ, his master. He wants to:
“… know him and the power of his resurrection …. share his sufferings …. (and become) like him in his death ….” Philippians 3:10
In other words, Paul is describing the process that Lutherans call sanctification.
Like Paul, I am far from completing this process. I’m still pressing on, and will be until the day of my death. Some days, I’m all too aware of my failures and shortfalls. Strangely, this doesn’t make me feel hopeless, but hopeful. After all, in the end, I do not have:
“…. a righteousness of my own that comes from the law; but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith…”Philippians 3:9
The race is already won, but running gives my life meaning. I want to imitate Jesus who saved me. I want to meet Him and hear these words:
“‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’” Matthew 25:21
I want to persevere. It’s my “one thing” — for more about this see: Bulls Eye!
For more on the book of Philippians visit these posts:
The Theme of Joy in Philippians
Philippians Chapter 1 — What Stands Out
Philippians Chapter 2 — What Stands Out