From: Rich Carlson
Date: February 5, 2020
Subject: It's February 5; Good Morning Union

“Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.”      Philippians 1:27

I was captured this morning by the verse right before this one, but this brought it to such a clear conclusion that I had to stop and “muse” for a while. Paul was in prison; he didn’t know it at the time but he could have just been left to die in that prison cell. That was not the case for this imprisonment like it was for his second and last visit to this Roman penitentiary a few years later. He did get out the first time, returned for a while to his itinerate ministry before returning a second time to Rome and dying for his faith.

But before he knew all that he was having to come to grips with the real possibility that this could in fact be the end. He loved those he served and only wanted the best for them. Here Paul and I see eye to eye! Paul could be dying; I’m not anticipating that in my near future! Paul believed that if he could only be reunited with his friends in Philippi that their “joy in Christ would overflow,”--- on account of him being there! And THIS was my challenge this morning!

I had to stop and ask myself—when I walk into a room, or probably more importantly, when I walk out a room, are the people with whom I shared that space for a period of time more joyful in Christ than when I entered?! What is my impact on a group of people when I am with them? Now, I’m NOT implying or even saying directly that EVERY group of people I associate with for any amount of time have to become born again and committed Christians before I leave. That’s not even my responsibility, that’s God’s job. But what impact do I have on the lives of the people who associate with me or I with them. Is it at least neutral but hopefully some degree of positive in connecting people to the Source of real joy. And for sure I pray that when I leave a room the people there are not left farther from God because I was there.

Paul believed that if he could be with his friends in Philippi he could impact their lives with the joy of Jesus. I want the same for my life. This is another way that I want to be like Paul!


Have a great day making a positive spiritual impact on every space you enter,

Pastor Rich


Quote for the day:      “Grant to every person the same rights you claim for yourself.” Synagogue


PS        Elliott Fulmer, principal of Taiwan Adventist School will be here today recruiting teachers!!

PPS      Winter break starts AFTER your last class today!! See you next Monday as we continue through Philippians.