Do You “Shine among Them Like Stars”?

By Courtney Etzel

I’ve been reading the book of Philippians and keep returning to a passage that serves as a great reminder of the attitude we should have as Christ followers.

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, ‘children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.’ Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain. But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. So you too should be glad and rejoice with me,” (Philippians 2:12-18).  

Paul wrote this letter to the church of Philippi while in a Roman prison. He was concerned with the way people were acting and wanted to encourage them to do things without grumbling or complaining and to create unity among one another.  Paul applauded them for being obedient even while he was away, and encouraged them to remain obedient. Paul wanted them to be a light to the world, a living testimony. He also wanted them to know that he was willing to sacrifice his life, and that he would be happy to do so. Paul also encouraged the church in Philippi to rejoice and be glad.

Many times I get caught up in things that happen in life and when things don’t go my way it is easy to grumble and complain. There are many times we may have to do something that we don’t like, but that doesn’t give us the right to complain. We should do all things so that we are giving glory to God. As Christ followers, people are watching us to see how we act. We may be the only Jesus they ever see. It is our job to live like Christ and be a testimony to those around us. If Paul can sit in a Roman prison and say that he would gladly sacrifice himself and is rejoicing for God, surely I can do tasks that I don’t like without complaining.

More “Highlights” - from Courtney Etzel

By Courtney Etzel

I have many Bible verses that I like. Some are for guidance, verses that spoke to me at a specific point in my life, and some are just reminders of God’s promises.  Here are a few of the verses that I have highlighted.

Philippians 4:6-7Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.  Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

I tend to be a worrier so this a verse I turn to time and time again. 

1 Corinthians 10:13 (MSG)No test or temptation that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he’ll never let you be pushed past your limit; he’ll always be there to help you come through it.

What a great reminder that I am not the only one who is tested, nor am I the first to be tested. I love how the Message says it.

Joshua 23:10Each one of you will put to flight a thousand of the enemy, for the Lord your God fights for you, just as he has promised

 I love the reminder in that God is always in our corner, fighting for us.

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These are just a few verses that I have book marked.  What verses have impacted you?