“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”
This is the life!
I have repeatedly heard people use this simple phrase to express when they are really enjoying something. I hear it when they are eating their favorite meal. It is shared when they find delight in their favorite pastime or entertainment. I have often seen it shared on social media along with a picture of someone sitting on the beach looking out into the ocean on a beautiful sunny day, or chilling by the fire in their favorite camp site. They say, “This is the Life!”
There are times when it seems that everything in life has lined up just perfectly in order for us to enjoy some peace or have some fun. Circumstances have come together in such a way that we pleased with what we are experiencing in the world around us. We are living it up! Having a ball!
It is no secret that the Apostle Paul, who authored the words in 1 Philippians, endured many hardships in his life as he ministered and served the Lord. He was often rejected, beaten, shipwrecked, and challenged throughout his years of planting churches and raising up disciples. Even as he writes these words, he was in chains with the possibility of being put to death lingering over his head. And yet, he rejoiced.
Paul found true joy in the worst of circumstances because he knew that his hope was beyond the physical world. He was delighted that Christ was being shared even to the prison guards that he was able to talk with. He found his happiness in knowing that there were people around the world that were empowered to advance the gospel because of the hardships he was able to overcome. To Paul, this was the life!
As we walk with Christ, I pray that our appetites will be turned toward the fulfilling of God’s will in the world. Let us relish in the work of discipleship and deliverance. May we revel in the moments when someone gives their heart to Christ. Let us be pleased only when someone finds their purpose and works to fulfill it to the glory of God. Pray that “living it up” is recognized as a reality that comes from living in obedience to Jesus.
Our hope lies beyond this life and our earthly circumstances. Even if we face death, it would still be our gain because of the treasures that we have built up in heaven.
Love you all!