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Summary: When we learn to follow God’s will for our lives and do it with joy then we will conduct ourselves in a manner that is worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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Philippians Chapter 1 (part 2) – “Life with purpose!”

On the Lighter side of life:

Light bulb jokes from the book 1002 Humorous Illustrations. Pages 223-225

Q: How many Calvinists does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: None: God has predestined when the lights will be one.

Q: How many Arminians does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Just one, but it has to be changed again and again?

Q: How many Christian counselors does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Only one, but the bulb has to be committed to long-term change.

Q: How many Presbyterians does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: They don’t know, but they will appoint a commission to discuss it and report back at the next meeting, at which time it will be discussed and referred back for further work.

Q: How many liberals does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: ten, as they need to hold a debate as to whether or not the lightbulb exists. Even if they can agree upon the existence of the lightbulb, they may not go ahead and change it for fear of alienating those who use fluorescent tubes.

Q: How many evangelicals does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Evangelicals do not change lightbulbs. They simply read out the instructions and hope the lightbulb will decide to change itself>

Q: How many Brethren does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Change?

Q: How many Amish does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: What’s a lightbulb?

Q; How many Baptists does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: A whole congregation. They need to vote on it.

Q: How many charismatics does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Twenty-one: one to change it and twenty to share the experience.

Q: How many Pentecostals does it take to change the lightbulb?

A: Ten: one to change it and 9 to pray against the darkness.

Q: How many charismatics does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Three: one to cast it out and two to catch when it falls.

Q: How many Southern Baptists does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: About 16 million: However, they are badly divided over whether changing the bulb is a fundamental need or not.

Q: How televangelists does it take to change a light bulb?

A: Honestly, we’re not sure . But for the message of change to continue to go out, please keep those letters and checks coming.

Thesis: When we learn to follow God’s will for our lives and do it with joy then we will conduct ourselves in a manner that is worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Opening Illustration:

The following conversation occurred between a canary in a cage and a lark on the window sill. The lark looked in at the canary and asked, "What is you Purpose?"

"My purpose is to eat seed."

"What for?"

"So I can be strong."

"What for?"

"So I can sing," answered the canary.

"What for?" continued the lark.

"Because when I sing I get more seed."

"So you eat in order to be strong so you can sing so you can get more seed so you can eat?"

"Yes."

"There is more to you than that," the lark offered. "If you’ll follow me I’ll help you find it, but you must leave your cage."

It’s tough to find meaning in a caged world. But that doesn’t keep us from trying. Mine deep enough in every heart and you’ll find it: a longing for meaning, a quest for purpose. As surely as a child breathes, he will someday wonder, "What is the purpose of my life?"

--Max Lucado, In the Grip of Grace

Scripture Text: Philippians 1:12-30

12Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel. 13As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. 14Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.15It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16The latter do so in love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. 18But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19for I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance.20I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. 25Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26so that through my being with you again your joy in Christ Jesus will overflow on account of me.27Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in one spirit, contending as one man for the faith of the gospel 28without being frightened in any way by those who oppose you. This is a sign to them that they will be destroyed, but that you will be saved—and that by God. 29For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him, 30since you are going through the same struggle you saw I had, and now hear that I still have.

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