Join us today for an episode about the joy we find in community...
Today's episode is focused on Philippians 4: 4-13...
In today’s Spiritual Foundation Episode, I talk about Philippians 4: 4-13. I share how we are supposed to show our faith by our joy. I also talk about how we find joy in community.
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Episode 1375: In Everything, Joy
[00:00:00] Scott Maderer: Thanks for joining me on episode 1, 375 of the Inspired Stewardship Podcast.
[00:00:09] Marcus Hall: I'm Marcus Hall, author of Pursuing Spiritual Wealth, 40 Principles That Make Your Life Richer. I challenge you to invest in yourself, Invest in others, develop your influence, and impact the world by using your time, your talent, and your treasures to live out your calling.
[00:00:26] Having the ability to recognize you are a manager and not an owner is key. And one way to be inspired to do that is to listen to this, the Inspired Stewardship Podcast. with my friend Scott Maderer.
[00:00:49] Scott Maderer: Engage in acts of kindness, give, serve, love, but also be thankful to receive those things from others. Instead of looking around and wondering, [00:01:00] I wish things could be different. Grow and bloom where you're planted. Take steps, take risk and step out in faith because with God you cannot fail. Welcome and thank you for joining us on the Inspired Stewardship Podcast.
[00:01:18] If you truly desire to become the person who God wants you to be, Then you must learn to use your time, your talent and your treasures for your true calling. In the Inspired Stewardship Podcast, you will learn to invest in yourself, invest in others and develop your influence so that you can impact the world.
[00:01:44] In today's Spiritual Foundation episode, I talk about Philippians 4, verses 4 13. I share how we are supposed to show our faith by our joy. And I also talk about how we find joy in community. [00:02:00] Philippians 4, verses 4 13. 13 says, Rejoice in the Lord always. Again, I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone.
[00:02:10] The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heart and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, beloved, whatever is true, Whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable.
[00:02:36] If there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you've learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you. I rejoice in the Lord greatly that now at last you have revived your concern for me.
[00:02:54] Indeed, you were concerned for me, but had no opportunity to show it. Not that I am referring to [00:03:00] being in need, for I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. And in any and all circumstances, I have learned the secret of being well fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need.
[00:03:15] I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Have you ever had one of those sessions, maybe sitting around a fire when out camping or maybe in your dorm room during college, where you're sitting around with a bunch of friends and you're hitting each other with those questions and riddles and things that you really just don't seem to know if there's any sort of Answers to them these sorts of philosophical, how many angels can dance on the head of a pin kinds of questions.
[00:03:46] If God is all powerful, can he make a rock so big that even he can't lift it? I think we've all had moments where we're wondering about questions, whether they're serious or whether they're joking. And we ponder whether they're really [00:04:00] important. And what do they really mean? What are the secrets of life?
[00:04:06] And one of those times, then when we were sitting around like that, One of the topics that came up because I was a Christian living with several non Christians in my dorm was if you're a Christian, should it show? And whether or not it should show, whether or not people should be able to tell that you're a Christian when they look at you.
[00:04:29] I wondered, do you mean should we wear name tags? No. Should we wear a particular uniform or prayer cap or shawl or special shoes? What do you mean by should it show? Should our faith show? Should a passerby, a total stranger, be able to look at you and know that you are a follower of Jesus?
[00:04:54] Should it show? At first glance and at one level, of course, the answer [00:05:00] to that is no that's ridiculous. It's not like we have a tattoo or a certain mark on our head or a certain way of acting that should make it obvious. And besides, it's not about the facade or what other people can perceive anyway, because only God is able to see into our heart and into the hearts of others and know what is true and what is a facade anyway.
[00:05:24] I think that's one of the reasons that J Jesus warns us against being judgmental of others, which were natural to do. We're quick to decide who's in, who's out, who fits, who doesn't, who believes, who doesn't what are the real Christians versus the other people? We make that mistake because we don't have the vision of God.
[00:05:46] And I've talked about that before on previous. episodes. We don't know what core beliefs or defining experiences have shaped the person that we're attempting to judge. We don't know where they're coming from. We don't know [00:06:00] where they're going to. And so all of that sort of judgment is better left to God.
[00:06:07] We're not in the business of judging, we're supposed to be in the business of invitation, inclusion, instruction, companionship, walking with other people, and being grateful and joyous together as we learn together where everyone is welcome. But on the other hand... We also know that faith is not simply a head thing.
[00:06:34] It's not just what goes on in our head or in our intellect. It's beliefs. It's things that we see and hold true. And oftentimes, sometimes there's debate and argument and discussion about what things are true. But faith is also a way of living. It's a way of showing up in the world. It's a way of being.
[00:06:58] And in that [00:07:00] sense, that question of should people be able to tell that you're a Christian. Maybe isn't so nonsensical after all. Should it show? Yeah, it should. If your faith is deep and real, it should be shown in the world and what you do and what you say. It should be shown in the choices you make and the priorities you set.
[00:07:24] It should be shown in your habits. It should be shown by attendance. At worship, it should be a shown by what you do in private and all of that is true, but it shouldn't just be shown because of our faith. It should be shown as something that's in us that comes out of us so that others can see it as well.
[00:07:48] It should be seen as a true joy and gratitude that shows up. We should be living as ones who live [00:08:00] thankfully, who live gratefully, who live aware of what others have done and are doing for us. We should be ultimately aware of our own privileges, our own blessings, not only the blessings that we treat as blessings, but the blessings that we don't even recognize as blessings.
[00:08:19] We should acknowledge the debt and that relationship, that, that connection, that being with, that we have with others, even the others that we don't see. Gratitude and joy should be shown to everyone as we live and as we move and have our being. Not as this Begrudging gratefulness that kind of happened when you were a little kid and somebody did something for you and your parent would lean down to you and say, so what do you say?
[00:08:51] But rather is a gratitude that just spills out of you at the wonder of being alive in this [00:09:00] world. Gratitude and joy. are deeply into us. If you think about Paul and listing the fruits of the spirit, he talks about love, but joy is the second listed fruit. They're all connected to each other too. I believe that love and joy and the rest of them are all aspects of one underlying thing.
[00:09:28] Paul seems to be big on joy. If you look at this Philippians passage, they think scholars think that this may have been made up over time from a lot of different sayings of Paul's. Now, maybe it was written down at one time, maybe it wasn't, it really doesn't matter. But these collections seem to be almost a collection of sayings about joy.
[00:09:51] I think these sayings were either put down by Paul or collected by others as a way of saying this is [00:10:00] how Paul viewed joy. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. Let it show. Joy is found in the knowledge and the nearness of God. The Lord is near. Everything you should treat with prayer and supplication and thanksgiving, not worry.
[00:10:20] That is a way to joy, and I will be honest. That's something that I struggle with a lot. There are days. Where I feel beat up and put down and finding joy in the moment is almost impossible. I think we all have that. Paul had that. And yet what he's saying here is, even when you feel that way, you still have to show up with joy.
[00:10:46] Whether you have a lot, whether you have a little. Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable. There are the things that you should be thinking on, that [00:11:00] you should be dwelling on. Dwell in those things and eventually that joy will return, you will find it again.
[00:11:10] And then Paul says, Live in community, show up with other people, because on those days where you can't find joy, maybe someone around you can lift you up and show you faith at work. Find people around you that are walking the walk and talking the talk, and on the days where they're down, you lift them, and on the days where you're down, they lift you.
[00:11:37] Engage in acts of kindness, give, serve, love, but also be thankful. to receive those things from others, instead of looking around and wondering, I wish things could be different. Grow and bloom where you're planted, take steps, take risk and step out in faith because with God, you [00:12:00] cannot fail. Paul says that he's learned the secret to this kind of joy.
[00:12:05] It is powered by gratitude. This grateful joy is, comes from that relationship that we have with God and with other people who are also lifted up in that same joyful moment. Thanks for listening.
[00:12:32] Thanks so much for listening to the Inspired Stewardship. podcast. As a subscriber and listener, we challenge you to not just sit back and passively listen, but act on what you've heard and find a way to live your calling. If you enjoyed this episode, do me a favor. Go over to facebook. com slash inspired stewardship and like our Facebook [00:13:00] page and mark it that you'd like to get notifications from us so that we can connect with you on Facebook and make sure that we're serving you to the best of our abilities with time and tips there.
[00:13:15] Until next time, invest your time, your talent, and your treasures. Develop your influence and impact the world.
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Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. – Philippians 4: 8