We live in a “getting” world where people live for what they can get. One manifestation of this is in relationships. The attitude is that while a relationship is benefiting me I will invest time and energy in it. However, when I no longer gain benefit then I ditch that friend, spouse or whoever.
Our faith though is a giving faith. At the heart of God’s operations, in grace, toward mankind is the giving of His Son (see John 3:16). For the godly, who by definition have their lives modelled on God, every situation should provoke a godlike reaction. Such a reaction is driven by the thought ‘what can I give?’, not ‘what can I get?’.
In Philippians 2 we find lots of giving. Let us observe such:
- In vv 1-4 we see a people giving themselves to each other for the benefit of each other.
- In vv 5-11 we see the Saviour giving Himself into this world and then giving Himself to the cross for our salvation.
- In vv 12-18 we have people giving themselves to God, that they might give themselves together for the benefit of one another. And thence their lives would be given for the benefit of the world.
- In vv 18-25 Paul is giving Timothy to the Philippians in order to benefit the Philippians.
- In vv 26-30 Paul writes giving Epaphroditus for the benefit of the Philippian church and Epaphroditus then giving himself for the Philippians’ benefit to the extent that he nearly died.
Every true example of giving is, of course, modelled upon the most perfect example of giving, that of Christ our Lord. And as His life is lived out through us there will emerge aspects of Philippians 2 giving in our lives. And that will lead to joy in being in the way of Christ.
Oh Lord may I seek to be a giver and not a getter.