What a joy it was to see so many of you face-to-face this past Sunday in worship. I am reminded of the many letters that the Apostle Paul wrote to the early churches. He began many of those letters with words of celebration and appreciation of his memory of them and his longing to return to see them once again face-to-face. I am sure those who joined us in worship this past Sunday can echo those same sentiments.
Paul’s love and concern for those many believers is evident in the challenges that he presented to them. Often times, these challenges were introduced with the fact that he was praying for specific results on their behalf.
Take a minute to read Philippians 1:9-11, as Paul’s prayer for the church at Philippi is one that your pastoral staff prays on behalf of Hyland Heights as well.
“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9-11
We, like Paul, desire that your love for one another will abound through your knowledge of God’s Word and development of your moral insight. As we engage with and understand the Word of God, we will learn what is best and put it into practice. Paul explains the “why” of these characteristics by presenting the opportunity for us “to be pure and blameless for the day of Christ.” Ultimately, the purpose for our continued growth and development is clearly presented at the end of verse 11 – “to the glory and praise of God.”
I believe we all have the same desire – to be pure and blameless before the Lord, and to bring glory and praise to God in our lives, both personally, and in the work He has called us to do.
With this end in mind, it is necessary for us to pursue these four characteristics as vital parts of our personal character. We are to grow in our love, knowledge, and moral insight, so we can determine what is best and be filled with God’s righteousness.
We should strive for these characteristics and pursue them faithfully and carefully in our daily lives.
I pray that we all will take this passage to heart so that we can grow in our love, become pure and blameless, and ultimately bring glory and praise to our Heavenly Father.