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Summary: In Philippians, Paul shares with us three characteristics of joyful Christians: loving relationships, a growing faith, and living a worthy life.

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TRIUMPHANT JOY #3: LOVING, GROWING AND LIVING

(August 2013 – Beausejour Church – Pastor Chris Jordan)

INTRO TO TOPIC: The Pursuit of Happiness (from the July 15, 2013 Time Magazine)

The Pursuit of Happiness: Why Americans are wired to be happy, and what that’s doing to us.

“Our happiness… (is) an almost adolescent restlessness, an itch to do the Next Big Thing.”

“It’s not as if we don’t have the financial means to keep ourselves stimulated.” We spend:

• $118 billion on travel abroad in 2012

• close to $25 billion per year to attend sporting events

• nearly $11 billion on movie tickets

• an annual $140 billion on recreational equipment and $200 billion on electronics:

HOWEVER: “The gap between our optimistic expectations and the reality that a significant portion of the population is, of late, cranky and dissatisfied may be what has spawned the vast happiness industry. We tap that industry in a lot of ways, with:

• Pills (25% of women & 5% of men say they are taking antidepressants)

• Food (48% of women and 44% of men eat to improve their mood)

• Self-improvement products and services (books and motivational speakers)

According to the World Happiness Report, published by the Earth Institute of Columbia:

• Top 4: Denmark, Finland, Norway and the Netherlands (Canada = #5; US = #11).

One of the most interesting stats from the Time Magazine article:

• Nearly half of regular worshippers say they’re very happy, compared with 26% of those who seldom or never attend religious services. (Christians are happier!)

QUOTE: “The longing to be happy is a universal human experience, and it is good, not sinful… the deepest and most enduring happiness is found only in God.” (John Piper, Desiring God).

BACKGROUND TO PHILIPPIANS:

Author & Date: The Apostle Paul in 61 AD

Theme: Joy in Christ

Occasion: Paul wrote Philippians during his first Roman imprisonment.

Review: We have learned that we are saints and servants, and rejoice in suffering.

THE BIG IDEA: In Philippians, Paul shares with us three characteristics of joyful Christians: loving relationships, a growing faith, and living a worthy life.

PAUL’S PRAYER: THREE CHARACTERISTICS OF JOYFUL CHRISTIANS:

“9 I pray that your love for each other will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in your knowledge and understanding. 10 For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until Christ returns. 11 May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation -- those good things that are produced in your life by Jesus Christ -- for this will bring much glory and praise to God.” (Phil. 1:9-11, NLT).

• When we have loving relationships, a growing faith, and a worthy life, God is glorified.

1. JOY IN LOVING RELATIONSHIPS.

Paul’s Prayer: “I pray that your love for each other will overflow more and more…” (v.9a).


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