April 1

Philippians 2:4-11

“Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.” vs. 4

In his poem, The Present Crisis, the anti-slavery poet, James Russell Lowell wrote, “New occasions teach new duties,” a perfect commentary on our current “present crisis.” All citizens of the world, believers and non-believers alike, are being urged to put into practice one of the basic principles of life in Christ. In the interest of saving thousands of lives, each of us are being challenged to “look not to our own interests, but to the interests of others.” Even though there appears to be no imminent threat to our own lives, and even though we’re feeling perfectly fine, our elected officials are telling us to practice social isolation. Some folks (even Christians) are resenting such decrees big time. They don’t like being told what to do, and they continue to do all they can to look out for themselves without regard to others. In most of our cities there is rampant hoarding–grocery store shelves are being cleaned out as individuals get what they can while they can. Such primitive impulses fly in the face of Paul’s words to the Philippians, a poor congregation that gave generously so that famine victims might eat. Followers of Jesus understand what it means to be humble servants, and it’s been gratifying to see them in action during these last weeks. This is a big time opportunity for us to practice what we preach, and the world is being blessed by our obedience.

Thought for the Day: Why do people hoard?

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