…Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6
How many partnerships begin with great hopes and dreams only to end in failure and broken promises? A wagon train heads west with the common goal of finding a good location to settle, with green pastureland, fresh water, and perhaps gold. The train thins out as desert, Indian raiders, and illness take their toll. Finally, a crude settlement develops at journey’s end, complete with general store, blacksmith shop, saloon, bank, school, and church. The future looks bright, but a few years later – bypassed by railroads, battered by severe winters, empty of gold – the original wagon train partnership ends in a ghost town, doors flapping in the wind, tumbleweeds blowing in the deserted street.
Paul knows the temptations threatening the Philippian Christians – persecution, strife and jealous bickering from within, discouragement over his absence and imprisonment. Therefore he adds the precious Gospel promise that God will bring His work in us to completion. By human efforts even the closest fellowship will eventually disintegrate. But the God who sent His Son to the cross will continue nurturing His church through the Gospel.
Your Gospel partnership will be threatened both from without and from within. People move out. Neighborhoods change. Pastors come and go. Buildings age. Sometimes Biblical mission is neglected. But Paul’s confidence applies to you as well. Centered in the Word and sacraments, you see again that the same God who began the Gospel partnership around His crucified and risen Son will continue that good work until Jesus comes again.
PRAYER: Thank You, Lord, for sending Your Son, Jesus, to the cross to save me from my sins. Continue nurturing me through the Gospel. Amen.
(Devotions from “My Daily Devotion” by Dr. Stephen J. Carter, copyright 1988, CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. For ordering information, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit www.cph.org.)
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