Summary: Find joy in the journey.
SO, YOU WANT TO BE HAPPY?
Th: Toward the Goal
Pr: FIND JOY IN THE JOURNEY.
?: How? How do we find it?
TS: We will find in our study of Philippians 4 three sources that are key to finding joy in the journey of life.
CV: “We will passionately pursue full devotion to Jesus Christ.”
I. CONTENTMENT (10-12)
II. CHRIST (12-13)
III. COMMUNITY (14-23)
PA: How is the change to be observed?
• Relax in God’s providence.
• Refuse to let circumstances dictate your attitude.
• Rely on God’s strength.
• Release your resources.
• Rest in God’s provision.
RMBC 10 August 08 AM
ILL Happiness (S)
Slow down, you move too fast.
You got to make the morning last.
Just kicking down the cobble stones.
Looking for fun and feelin’ groovy.
Hello lamppost, What cha knowing?
I’ve come to watch your flowers growing.
Ain’t cha got no rhymes for me?
Doot-in’ doo-doo, Feelin’ groovy.
Got no deeds to do, No promises to keep.
I’m dappled and drowsy and ready to sleep.
Let the morning time drop all its petals on me.
Life, I love you, All is groovy.
Are you feeling groovy?
If you grew up in the 1960s and 70s you were probably at least humming along with that Simon and Garfunkel song.
It was a crazy time to be living, and there was so much change going on.
At the end of last year, this era was well illustrated by the film “Across the Universe,” which was an idealistic view of the Beatles culture.
During the 60s and 70s, people were looking for meaning in their lives in the midst of growing meaninglessness.
People were looking for love in the midst of growing hate.
And that was the Beatles’ solution, “All You Need Is Love.”
It was an influential time in our culture.
There is no denying it.
A lot of the moral standards that were unquestionable up until that point in time were challenged and changed.
Some of it needed to be challenged.
But not all of it needed to be changed.
And the problem is, forty years later, we are not better off.
The problems have changed.
And the pursuit of happiness is still bringing a lot of emptiness in people’s lives.
The search for happiness is an elusive one.
When you ask the typical person what they want, you know what they are going to say.
They want to be happy.
Interestingly, there seems to be a distinction in God’s Word about being happy and having joy.
Happy is our present condition.
If I state, “I am happy,” I am saying that the conditions that I am now living in cause me to feel pleasure.
I feel good about myself and the circumstances round about me.
Joy, however, is something deeper and more profound.
If I state, “I have joy,” I am saying that I am blessed.
I feel good regardless of the circumstances round about me.
Today is our last study in the letter Paul had written to the believers in Philippi.
Paul has been showing the Philippians about how to make the journey of life as a Christian.
It is a daily movement.
It is step by step moving toward Christlikeness.
Our task is to move toward that goal.
And here is the thing that Paul wants us to know:
As we move “Toward the Goal,” we will FIND JOY IN THE JOURNEY.
But the question is how?
How do we find the joy?
We will find in our study of Philippians 4 three sources that are key to finding joy in the journey of life.
The first source is…
I. CONTENTMENT (10-12)
(10) I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. (11) Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. (12) I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.
Context: Paul was greatly moved by the Philippians concern.
The Philippians had not been content to just pray for Paul while he was in Rome.
They put some feet to their prayers by sending Epaphroditus to him with a financial gift.
And this moved Paul.
He was very grateful, and it meant a lot.
But he wanted them to know, he was fine.
He knew how to live with contentment.
When Paul used the word contentment here, he was taking a word that was used in Greek philosophy and applied it to his own context as a Christian.