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Summary: Christ our Life (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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Reading: Philippians chapter 1 verses 3-11.

Ill:

Genie and ‘box of chocolates.

• Wouldn’t it be great to be able wish away our problems.

• To have instant solutions to the things you desire.

• In this letter there are no instant solutions, there are no quick cures;

• But there are some good principles to living life.

• And living life with a smile on your face;

• And with joy in your heart.

Philippians is a thank you letter (e.g. chapter 4 verse 14-16);

• Written by the Apostle Paul for the gift that the Church at Philippia sent to him.

• But this thank you letter contains lots and lots of bonus features e.g. extras.

• Ten years have passed since Paul was in Philippia;

• But as he writes he is able to remember and in chapter one he says......

(A). I have you in my mind (vs 3-6):

3“I thank my God every time I remember you. 4 In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy 5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, 6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus”.

Ill:

Recent research discovered that the things people most often forget are:

• 6th place: Faces 42%

• 5th place: What was said 49%

• 4th place: Words. 53%

• 3th place: Telephone numbers 57%

• 2nd place: Where something is 60%

• 1st place: Names 83%

The Apostle Paul never forgot the people he met in Philippi:

• He could have been taken up with thoughts of misery;

• After all he was an innocent man confined to a prison cell.

• He could have felt sorry for himself for the rough deal he had been dealt.

• If do some biblical mathematics you can figure out;

• That for five years he has been under house-arrest or in a prison cell.

• Note that: 5 years!

But if you read this letter you would know that there is no sense of self pity in this letter:

• Surprisingly, his heart and mind are full of Joy;

• One of the reasons for that joy was the people he met in Philippi.

• Verse 3: “I thank my God every time I remember you”

• Verse 4: “In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy”.

Ill:

He could have said;

• “When I think of Philippia, I remember.....

• I faced satanic attack from a demon possessed fortune teller.

• I remember how I was beaten up by an indifferent cold-hearted jailer.

• I remember how I was chained to a dark slimy wall in the heart of a secure jail.

• But instead of negativity the letter is full of Joy;

• Because he realised that God used these circumstances for the blessing of others.

Ill:

• A shipwrecked man was once washed ashore on an uninhabited island.

• Using the few things he managed to salvage from the wreck;

• And from whatever he could find on the island.

• He painstakingly built himself a hut;

• That little hut was the only protection he had from the harsh elements;

• And the only place he could safe­guard his meagre possessions.

• One morning he went out on a lengthy search for food,

• When he returned in the evening he was shocked to find the hut engulfed in flames.

• The loss of his hut devastated him.

• He spent that night despondent, sleeping on the sand.

• The next morning he awoke early and,

• To his surprise, saw a ship anchored off the island.

• Shortly a crew member was rowed to the island, he stepped ashore and told the man,

• "We saw your smoke signal and came to rescue you!"

Things are not always as they seem:

• Paul may have faced satanic attack from a demon possessed fortune teller.

• But he was also able to bring deliverance & introduce her to a knowledge of the Lord.

• He may have been beaten up by an indifferent cold-hearted jailer.

• But he was able to show that jailor kindness and lead him & his family to faith in Christ!

• He may have chained to a dark slimy wall in the heart of a secure jail.

• But he and Barnabus were able to witness (by singing hymns) to others in that jail!

Paul’s heart and mind are full of Joy;

• Because God was at work during his time in Philippi.

• Even during the difficult times!

• Therefore the Christian should essentially be an optimist:

• But too many of us are pessimists!

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