1 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
We bring this week to a close with the same passage we read on Monday. You may recall that in that first day’s reading I asked you to read through these 11 verses a second time, to read through them slowly and to write down or underline in your Bible the key words or phrases that stood out to you in that second reading.
If you regularly journal your thoughts alongside the First 15, you may be able to flip back in what you have recorded this week to see which words God’s Spirit brought to your attention. If you underlined those in your Bible, you can see those as well.
Today I want to ask you to think about how your understanding or appreciation of this text may have grown over the course of all the readings we did this week.
Recall that we talked about being generous with the precious resource of our time. We looked at having “faith like a child” and the expression of that in the example of two children in our church, Brynley & Blayde, whose lemonade stand raises money for ZOE Ministry. We talked about how challenging it is to embrace the message of contentment in a culture that constantly tells us we do not have enough.
And yesterday we looked at how Paul instructs Timothy to “command those who are rich in the present world… to be rich in good deeds.”
Today we return again to the example of Christ because Christianity is ultimately grounded in submitting our lives to him and living according to his example.
Take a moment to listen to what God’s Spirit wants you to hear today.
What is one thing God might be challenging you to do to be more “like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind” with Christ?
Lord Jesus, I am thankful today for the example of your life, the power of your teaching and the love expressed in your death and resurrection. In you, I see the capacity of unconditional love and the pattern of life that can be what you promised - life and life to the full. Help me Lord Jesus to claim that life as I surrender my life again to you this day. AMEN.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.