Rejoice in all circumstances

Paul the Apostle was a fiery preacher of the gospel, who found himself imprisoned in Rome.  He was of course under constant guard and restricted in his movements.  Many of Paul’s friends, particularly in Philippi—the first European church founded by the evangelist—were concerned for his well-being, and send word of encouragement to him.  What they had failed to take into account was the fact that although the Romans had locked his body up, they were totally unable to restrict Paul’s mind, heart, and spirit!

Circumstances, for Paul, looked very undesirable at best, but his response was astounding!  He wrote to his loved ones at Philippi from his prison cell, not words of complaint and despondency—Bur words of joy and even more joy!  He said, in effect, “The things which have happened to me have furthered the good news of Jesus Christ!  Here at the prison and in the surrounding area many have become bold preachers and lots of the guards are becoming Christians!  So, don’t feel sorry for me!  I am rejoicing, and shall keep on rejoicing!  You do the same!”  As a matter of fact, in his short letter of only four chapters, he used the words “joy” and “rejoice” no less than 16 times!  That’s a strange attitude for a man wrongly thrown into prison- right?!  Well, you see it’s all a matter of perspective!  While others looked at the circumstances, Paul looked to God!

I’m encouraging you today to stop fretting and frowning.  By now you’ve found out that doesn’t help anything anyway!  Take Paul’s lead and:  “Rejoice!  And again I say rejoice!”