Philippians 2:12-18 (NRSV)

12 Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure. 14 Do all things without murmuring and arguing, 15 so that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, in which you shine like stars in the world. 16 It is by your holding fast to the word of life that I can boast on the day of Christ that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. 17 But even if I am being poured out as a libation over the sacrifice and the offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you— 18 and in the same way you also must be glad and rejoice with me.

Philippians 2:12 (NRSV)

12 Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling;

DEVOTION – Elvis North (Alabama)

Shortly after celebrating my 75th birthday, I sensed a calling from God to become involved in an ecumenical prison ministry called Kairos.  With significant reluctance – but with prayer – I eventually responded to the prodding of God’s Spirit and am now involved in ministry with three different correctional facilities.

What a remarkable learning experience this has proved to be – beginning with the fact that God’s timing (kairos in Greek) is so very different from the time kept by the watch I wear on my wrist (chromos).  While I have tried to serve God throughout my life, what a joy it is to know that we can be useful and usable at any age!

Paul’s instructions in Philippians 2:12 apply to each of us individually.  For me that means continuing to listen for and to obey God’s call on my time and resources.

As a follower of Jesus  I pray that all of us will find our calling from God.  The list provided in Matthew 25 – feeding the hungry and thirsty, welcoming the stranger, clothing the naked, visiting the sick or imprisoned, or befriending the lonely – is a good place to start.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:We are never too old to obey God’s call.

PRAYER: Teach us, O God, to serve you and to answer your call throughout our lives.  Amen.

PRAYER FOCUS: THOSE WHO FEEL TOO OLD TO BE USEFUL

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