Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4
During the destructive flood of 1982, residents of Fort Wayne, Indiana, faced a major crisis. Despite round-the-clock efforts of city workers, the waters continued to rise. Sandbags could not be filled and placed in position fast enough to hold back the waters. An emergency call went out to the citizens of Fort Wayne. And they responded in droves – men, women, and many high school students. They put their hands together and worked until their backs were weary and their hands bruised. The battle was finally won as the waters receded. Later city leaders used as a slogan to help economic recovery, “Put your hands together, Fort Wayne.”
Paul in our text suggests that Christians need to work together within the fellowship of believers. Faced with persecution and ridicule for confessing Christ, the Philippian believers needed each other. Entrusted with Christ’s command to be witnesses to the ends of the earth, they could succeed only by putting their hands together.
Put your hands together, Paul urges us – not to fight a flood for a few days but to witness to the Savior’s love continually. Faced with ridicule, indifference, and anti-Christian values, we desperately need each other within the fellowship of believers.
Paul provides power for this cooperative venture by pointing to the One who put His hands to work for us. He took the nature of a servant, was made in human likeness, humbled Himself, and became obedient to death – even death on a cross. Because Jesus Christ completed His saving work for us, He joins us to the Christian community in our baptism and enables us to serve each other joyfully as we reach out to the world. Put your hands together!
PRAYER: O Holy Spirit guide us so that we may be witnesses to Christ’s saving love. Help us to join together to reach out to those who do not know the Savior. 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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