ODB: Change Is Possible

April 7, 2019

READ: Philippians 2:1–4 

It is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Philippians 2:13

One Saturday afternoon, some youth group members from my church gathered to ask one another some hard questions based on Philippians 2:3–4: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” Some of the difficult queries included: How often do you take an interest in others? Would someone describe you as humble or proud? Why?

As I listened, I was encouraged by their honest answers. The teenagers agreed that it’s easy to acknowledge our shortcomings, but it’s hard to change, or—for that matter—desire to change. As one teen lamented, “Selfishness is in my blood.”

The desire to let go of our focus on self to serve others is only possible through Jesus’s Spirit living in us. That’s why Paul reminded the Philippian church to reflect on what God had done and made possible for them. He had graciously adopted them, comforted them with His love, and given His Spirit to help them (Philippians 2:1–2). How could they—and we—respond to such grace with anything less than humility?

Yes, God is the reason for us to change, and only He can change us. Because He gives us “the desire and power to do what pleases him” (v.13 nlt), we can focus less on ourselves and humbly serve others.

— Poh Fang Chia

In what ways has God helped you turn from selfishness and be more willing to serve others? How does Jesus’s humility inspire you to humbly serve?

Our responsibility is to respond to God’s ability in humility.

Source: Our Daily Bread