“If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account.” (Philippians 1:22–24, ESV)
Paul sat in a prison cell but he had confidence that God would deliver him from that prison. He knew he would get out. He was not sure when it would be but his deliverance was going to happen.
He acknowledges that he could die in prison. He was okay with that. He knew that would mean he would be with Jesus and that was his ultimate desire. But at the same time, he realized that God had him here on earth for a reason. But that reason was not for Paul. The reason Paul would get out was for the people God had called him to serve.
In Ephesians, it says:
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10, ESV)
We all have an assignment from God. There is work to do. He placed each of us in this time and place to serve his purpose. There are people around you who need you. God put you here for them.
Paul’s confidence that God would deliver him from the prison came from the fact that he knew he had more work to do. Paul’s work was not finished. And Paul believed God would give him the time he needed to accomplish the job. Paul’s deliverance was not as much for Paul as it was for the Philippians.
Who needs you?
- Your children?
- Your spouse?
- Your neighbor?
- Your coworker?
- A stranger?
There are people who need you that you don’t even realize need you. But they are out there. There are so many people who need a friend, who need encouragement, who need help, who need hope. You just might be the one to give it. God has given you the time. Let’s go make a difference.
Lord, give us more time and opportunity to reach more people before you call us home! Amen.