Theme of the Week: Book of the Bible – Philippians
Bible Verse: In your relationship with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus. Philippians 2:5
Scripture Reading: Philippians 2:1-11
One day, when my son was in grade four, he came home from school and said to me, “Hey Dad, I’m the second fastest, the fourth smartest and the funniest kid in my class.”
Of course, I was amused at his sense of his place in the world, but I was also a bit sad. At such an early age he was able to ascertain the pecking order in his closest society and where he fit on that scale.
Most of us do this most of the time. We walk into a room and quickly figure out who is who. We can determine who is high up on the pecking order (maybe because of money or skill or looks or position) and who is low on the pecking order. Not only that, but we can conclude with surprising precision where we are on that pecking order.
If you’re like me, you feel better when you are moving up the pecking order than moving down. You feel better if you are becoming more liked, more powerful, more envied than if you are becoming more irrelevant, more insignificant, more avoided.
So, naturally, we shun those lower down the pecking order and gravitate to those higher up. But that is a complicated climb because those higher up are likewise avoiding you.
It can be a real mess.
But this is the opposite way that Jesus chose. Philippians says that Jesus was in very nature God. That’s as high on the pecking order than you can get. But His focus was downward. He went as low as you could go. He became a human. He became a human servant. He became a human servant who died on a cross.
We are told that our attitude in relationships needs to be like Jesus’. It needs to be humble. It needs to have a lowly focus. This is hard to do, but if Jesus never did that for us, we would never have the hope of eternal life.
It is because of Jesus’ great selfless love for us that we are admonished to be just like Him.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, You see the pride and insecurity in my heart. I naturally don’t want to be associated with people of lower stature than me; I want to be accepted and welcomed into circles where people are, in my estimation, of greater value. Please forgive me for this favoritism. Please fill me with Your humble nature. Let me be willing to love and serve everyone just like You loved and served everyone, including me. Help me to see people as image bearers of You and to love them accordingly. Amen.
Reflection: Who has God brought into your circle of influence that you find it hard to want to be close to? Where is God asking you to be more like Him in His humble way that He acted?
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