When Paul talked to God about the church in Philippi, there was one particular word he always used to describe his deeply held feelings. Whenever his thoughts went back to the Christians in that city, a strong opinion about these people overtook his heart and he would blurt out the one word that best described his intense passion about these Philippians.
It was a powerful word Paul used. For many people today, it would be shocking that anyone would use such a word about a church. It’s a word that reveals how these Philippians had treated Paul and permanently altered him. The word is:
The Philippians encouraged Paul in a forever type of way. They generously supported him, partnered with him, suffered with him, endured alongside him, shared with him, defended truth with him, told others about Jesus with him. In fact, Paul developed such a unique appreciation for the Jesus Followers in Philippi that he could write this: “God knows how much I love you and long for you with the tender compassion of Christ Jesus.” (1:8)
Imagine someone thinking that about a church!!! That’s cool. That’s the way it should be with us! May we live like the Philippian church (check out chapter 2), so that everyone we encounter would use such a word about us.