September 17

Philippians 1:21-26

“For to me, living is Christ and dying is gain.” vs. 21

Paul had visited Philippi on his first missionary journey somewhere around 50 AD and managed to stay in touch with periodic letters, including this one written about 58 during one of his frequent imprisonments. He loved this little congregation and bares his soul as he openly shares with them deep feelings about living and dying. Many in our time have difficulty talking about the prospect of imminent death either for themselves or for others. For Paul it was no big deal! Living and dying were both the same for him. Either way he would be in Christ Jesus! What a blessing it is when we can come to that point in our faith journeys! Obviously, given the option, most of us would choose to go on living as we have in the past. It’s what we’ve gotten used to, and because of advancements in medicine, we have grown to expect we’ll be able to lead active lives for a good long time. Some don’t want to consider the prospect of dying–they don’t even want to think about endings. But the truth is that sooner or later death will be on our doorsteps and knocking on the door. Now we’ll never be able to prepare fully for that day, but we can certainly share our feelings about it with those we love. Our words are a powerful testimony of faith and can prepare the way for sweet goodbyes. 

Thought for the Day: With whom do I need to have a talk about my ending?

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