Don’t you secretly, or not-so-secretly, want to shine like a star, to stand out, to be brilliant?
I’m going to tell you how to do it.
Actually, Paul told us how to do it in a letter he wrote from a jail cell to a first century church in Philippi. Here’s what you do, he said, “…so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life…” Phil. 2:14-15
What could possibly precede Paul’s “so that” as the qualification for shining like a star in the universe?
It must be something like a Mother Teresa inspired life spent caring selflessly for the poor. Her star still shines brightly. Perhaps theological brilliance, like that of Paul himself, is the requirement. It could be that great faith, wild generosity, or world-changing accomplishments like curing cancer or negotiating lasting peace in the middle east are justifications for star status.
Nope. None of the above.
Are you ready for Paul’s formula for attaining shining star brilliance?
Here it is: “Do everything without complaining or arguing…”
That’s it? I think it might be easier to cure cancer.
“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like the stars in the universe as you hold out the world of life…” Phil. 2:14-16
Thank you for sharing this lil gem, “Do everything without complaining or arguing…”, I find that when the complains begin to crowd my mind, a small prayer of thanks changes my energy, makes me feel lucky to just be alive and helps erase the complaints. Its a nice insightful blog. 🙂
Been pondering complaining and arguing, and it occured to me that while Paul was probably speaking about people to people interactions, one thing that certainly makes us “dim,” is when we argue and complain to God. We argue with Him, either refusing to do what He has asked, or trying to convince Him that He should do something another way. And even when we “submit” to His ways, acknowledging that He is God, we still tend to “hem and haw” about how hard life is when we follow Him…or how we can’t imagine how we’re going to get through whatever is before us. While watching Christians argue and complain is certainly a deterrant to the “crooked and depraved generation” desiring something different, watching Christians complain and argue with God has to be even worse. So I’m thinking that if I focus on complying with God (not arguing) and thanking Him (not complaining), His Spirit will have a clearer path (in my heart) to shine His light to the rest of the world. I might even relate to my fellow man a little more peaceably. Maybe I can get off this island one of these days!
Timely topic…am actually having a little snafu with a friend right now. “Thought that when you two became friends, you would get along and not argue, because you were Christians and you knew that God didn’t want you to do that,” was my daughters response to the aforementioned “snafu.” She’s right that God doesn’t want us to argue and complain. She’s right that we’re Christians. Even Christians who genuinely want to follow God, obey Him, honor Him, enjoy Him and shine for Him. Thinking about arguing and complaining thanks to you. Let’s see…I argue to prove that I’m right. I complain because I think that something should be different about a situation and I know what that difference should be. So I guess I need humility to not insist that I am proven right and contentment or self-control, not to complain about things. Not sure. Think a desert island by myself is my best chance to shine! Blameless, pure and being a child of God without fault does sound wonderful, however. Poor me has to go do Saturday chores now. Is that complaining? 🙂
Ha! Thanks Sue. Happy shining:)
Hmmmm….have to choose my island. 🙂