Bible Reference: Philemon 1:6
Bible Text: 6 … I pray that as you share your faith with others it will grip their lives too, as they see the wealth of good things in you that come from Christ Jesus.
Bible Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)
The apostle Paul wrote this letter while still in jail, because of his preaching the Word of God. The letter was to his Brother in the Lord, Philemon. Paul’s life had been enriched by Philemon, and he wanted Philemon to know that he was praying that the lives of others would also be enriched as he shares the Word with them. Friends, I believe that God got my attention on this because He wanted me to stop and think about how ridiculous we oftentimes are today. If we had a good relationship with the Governor of our state, or a senator, or the head of any country, don’t you know that it would not be hidden from anyone we come into contact with? You talk about name dropping – I bet we would do our share of that!! Can’t you imagine us casually saying in a conversation with one of our school pals, that we had dinner at the White House last weekend with our good pals, Michelle and Barack? Oh, and by the way, don’t forget that you have a free invitation to take a friend with you for dinner over the next weekend! Do you suppose you would have many takers? Of course you would, in fact I bet you would have a hard time deciding who to take, out of the hundreds of interested parties. Can you imagine the excitement they would hear in your voice as you share? Compare that to the way that most would mumble under their breath that they went to church last weekend, or they are now a child of the King of all kings. How do you suppose God must feel when He sees us avoiding the issue of sharing excitedly about Christ in our lives? Sadly, in most cases our reason is merely because we are afraid of being rejected, or perhaps put down for being one of those ‘religious fanatics’. Friends, Paul was praying that the lives of others would be touched, and jolted into the reality of Jesus Christ, when they encountered Philemon. Sure the ‘man’ might be standing in front of them, but oh that they might actually see and encounter Jesus. You know, this is my prayer every day – oh that they might see Jesus! May I encourage you to pray the same? Pray that our hearts will be so intertwined with the life and teachings of Jesus, that our words will sound like something He would say, and that our actions would make our friends think of Jesus, and may our words and actions speak to the heart of our friends, that they too might desire to know our Savior. If we were losing weight, they would want to know what kind of diet we were on. If we were looking younger than the last time they saw us, they would want information on the ‘magic potion’ we must be taking! If we are excited about Jesus, and only concerned about His goodness, His mercy and our total relationship with Him, then perhaps they would want to know more, or even be introduced to Jesus. Let’s all try to do a better job at opening up our lives so that Jesus might shine through, dear ones.
Lord Jesus, thank You for Your servants, Paul and Philemon. Thank You for Your Word, for it is powerfully filled with challenges such as we have studied today. Our lives, even now in the 21st century should be just as reflective of You and Your saving grace, as it was in the life of Philemon. Please help us to be unashamed of the gospel, unashamed of our Savior, and very open to reflecting the love of God in every aspect of our lives. Lord, may the words of our mouth and the meditation of our heart, always be acceptable to You, representative of You, and usable by You to touch the lives of those that we come into contact with each day. Its all about You Lord Jesus. Help us be be usable instruments through which You can proudly minister. AMEN!
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