I'm writing this from home, not 10 feet from a bathroom, as I've been in and out all morning with a stomach bug. It's not been fun. My body hurts, aches, pains, all sorts of things, and I've been trying to sleep, but my ailment won't let me. You know what I've learned in all of this? Even in this, I need to praise the Lord! For the Believer, and attitude of praise, worship, and exalting the Father in all things SHOULD be what we seek! We're not promised that we will have an easy or perfect life. We're not promised wealth, health, or anything else, but we ARE promised a comforter, counselor, and friend in the Holy Spirit. God is ALWAYS worthy to be praised, even if our situations are not praiseworthy. Unfortunately, we live in a time of ingratitude, envy, and jealousy. It's rampant. Most people would rather complain about their situation, as opposed to remembering the incredible promise: " 28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. " (Romans 8). We would rather complain about our situation, look on envy at someone else's life, and seek our own desires. But here's a clue that will help your peace and joy in life: If you're praising God, and seeking to please Him, you won't have time for the envious, jealous nonsense we get caught up in! If God is praised in all circumstances, we will see God's goodness in all things! It takes practice. Being caught up in praising God in all circumstances is not a natural thing! It is a supernatural event that requires our surrender. Yet, it's how Paul could write the book of joy in prison shackles, and it is how we can write joy on our hearts in spite of our circumstances. Rejoice in the Lord, always! Praise His name in EVERYTHING! It will always be worth it, because He is always WORTHY! Philippians 4
Exhortation, Encouragement, and Prayer
2I entreat Euodia and I entreat Syntyche to agree in the Lord. 3Yes, I ask you also, true companion,b help these women, who have laboredc side by side with me in the gospel together with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.
4Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5Let your reasonablenessd be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9What you have learnede and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
10I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. 11Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
14Yet it was kind of you to sharef my trouble. 15And you Philippians yourselves know that in the beginning of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church entered into partnership with me in giving and receiving, except you only. 16Even in Thessalonica you sent me help for my needs once and again. 17Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that increases to your credit.g 18I have received full payment, and more. I am well supplied, having received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God. 19And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 20To our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.
23The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.
Footnotes: a 1 Or brothers and sisters; also verses 8, 21 b 3 Or loyal Syzygus; Greek true yokefellow c 3 Or strived (see 1:27) d 5 Or gentleness e 9 Or these things--9which things you have also learned f 14 Or have fellowship in g 17 Or I seek the profit that accrues to your account