Saturday, December 8, 2012

My Prayer Today...

Philippians 1:9-11 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God. 

I love this verse. I pray this verse. I am challenged by this verse. 

I started to break the verse down and really chew on the Word-revelation is coming...slowly.

Vs 9...I pray, that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and discernment...

I like this! Love abounding sounds nice, it sounds like I could gain knowledge and discernment as I love. I love to love! Although I am reminded that sometimes to love it requires my own laying down. I think about in John when Jesus says “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends” I also think of the love chapter in I Corinthians and all the things love is...I am not those things. But I have hope that my love will abound more and more. 

I keep reading this part over and my love may abound more and more IN knowledge and all discernment...which means as I gain knowledge/discernment my love grows.

...the more I "know/discern" the more I should LOVE

It feels like at times when people gain knowledge of the word, they forsake love. I need to walk in love with others who may not be in the same place as me spiritually (new believer or saved for 50 yrs), with others that are drinking the “milk” of the word not the “meat”, my love should be greater as I gain knowledge. I should not look down my nose at others. 
Also as I gain discernment I should not push those things I discern on others, but LOVE them in a greater way-knowing that there is a HUGE difference between immaturity and rebellion

Vs. 10 ...that you may approve the things that are excellent... 

Again my first response is I like this! I am a glass half full kind of girl, I can look at the good things-I can approve of the excellent things. Then a question pops in my head but what do I do with the things that are not excellent? And why is it easier to look at the negative than the positive. How do I approve (consider right or good; think or speak favorably of) the excellent things? 
Philippians 4:8 is a choice!!! “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever thing are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy-meditate on these things.” 

I can choose to think on these things. 
I can choose to approve the excellent things. 
I can choose to only hear and see the bad/negative. 
Its my choice. 

The next verse knocks me over a little bit more...

Vs10 ...that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ... 

Hold up! I want to know what I am getting into here...I look up the definitions of sincere and offense. 

Sincere-free from pretense or deceit; proceeding from genuine feelings. Saying what they genuinely feel or believe; not dishonest or hypocritical. 
I think I can live my life being sincere. Speaking what I genuinely feel or believe. Although sometimes its hard to really say what I feel out loud. 

(Without) Offense-the act of causing anger, resentment, displeasure, or affront. The state of being offended. A violation or infraction of a moral or social code; a transgression or sin. 

H O W can I live un-offended until the the day of Christ. Jesus as my example was un-offended at the people shouting crusify him crusify him! So how can I be so easily offended. Pick a topic and I can find offense. I don’t think I am alone in this, but I am not looking at others being offended rather I am looking at myself. 

This is where my prayer, the cry of my heart comes out...LORD may I be sincere and without offense until You return!!! 

Vs 11 ...being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. 

A question I am still searching and seeking; what does it mean to be filled with the fruit of righteousness? My prayer is to be filled with the fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Is this the fruit of righteousness? I think we can only get these by Jesus giving them to us-for the glory and praise of God. 

Jessica Lima
Intercessory Missionary
Director of Jump In House of Prayer Canby, OR
Co-founder of Precursor International

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