Click this link to hear an audio version of the below text narrated by SOTH member Jerry Rhinehart: https://sothrichfield.podbean.com
Philippians 2:1-11 (NIV)
Imitating Christ’s Humility
2 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. 5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross! 9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
How does this passage challenge the conventional definition of success?
Lord, one of the hurtful things that were prevalent in our society before this lockdown was the intensity of schedules and what we felt was important. Our focus on careers, sports, arts, financial stability, and personal pleasures became a priority over You and going to church was an afterthought. Having all of those things taken away helps everyone reorder priorities as to what really is most important. Lord humble me as I see that I am not in control and that all these things that I was so invested in were not as critical to my happiness and success as I thought. Make this time of isolation from the distractions of the world help me have a personal revival where I focus on the only thing in the world that really matters. You! Let me be encouraged that You are in control of this world and of all things in this world, including a virus. Let me respond with tenderness and compassion as I value time with You, family and others above myself. Remind me to check on neighbors who may not have critical supplies, and give them some out of my own supply, if needed. Make permanent changes to my habits to extend after this crisis, so I am inclined to contact those who are sick, grieving, lonely and share the love of Christ now and into the future. Change my perspective to measure success by time spent with You, serving You and grounded in my relationship in You. You humbled Yourself to give me forgiveness and everlasting life. Help my success be a result of humbling myself to comfort and serve others in Your name. Amen