Philippians 3:8, 10-14 I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord… I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus.
The other day I was on a zoom call and the internet was acting up. Two or three times the video and sound froze and eventually “Internet is unstable. Please wait.” came across the screen. The truth is I didn’t want to wait. So I restarted my laptop, only to be met with the same problem.
In our world, where immediate gratification is crucial, Paul’s message can be hard to hear. And if you’re anything like me, “waiting” can be a struggle. For the most part I don’t like waiting for my coffee to brew, my internet, or waiting to see the Patriots once again win the Super Bowl. – That may be a bit far-stretched but the point is I don't like to wait.. The truth is I want it now. It's even hard to work for a far-away goal. I remember working toward my becoming ordained and how slow the pace seemed, of course now it is a blurr.
But there is something to be said for working hard and being patient, especially when it comes to creating the world God intends for us. It can seem like excruciatingly slow progress to give time and work toward a worthy cause – especially when it feels like nothing is changing.
But when we look closer, our efforts do have an impact—even if it's just one person at a time. If we hear nothing else from Paul’s message today, we can take away this—keep pressing toward the goal because our efforts are fruitful. You make a difference.
This week, find time to be in prayer and Consider physically noting each time you pray. If you tried this daily, when you look back, you have a list of 7 times that you committed to the work of being transformed by God, and thus better prepared yourself for the work of transforming the world.
Almighty Lord, I love you. Thank you for loving me and all of us first. In a world, where it seems a bit chaotic, reveal to us your faithfulness. Continue to bless and guide our work, but more than that, empower us to face the day, knowing that you are leading the way. We look to you, and strive to be more like you, the author, and the perfecter of our faith. Lord God, I pray this in Your Son's mighty name. Amen
Meet the pastor
Rev. Pastor Carl Schreiber has been serving East Orrington Congregational Church (EOCC) since March 12, 2006