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Jul 12 / Chuck Smith, Jr.

June 19, 2022

Welcome and Prayer: Nancy Lopez

Good morning!  Welcome to RefleXion.  May the Spirit of the Lord be with you!

The air we breathe….did you ever meditate on air?  The Genesis story of beginnings tells us that God created Light and Dark, Heaven and Earth, the Seas, (no mention of air), Plants and Trees (don’t they need air?), stars, sun and moon, sea creatures and birds, beasts of the earth (birds and beasts need air!), and then men and women.  Maybe the elements were created to form air. 

I don’t know, but what we learn is that when the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground, He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, the man became a living soul.  Finally, some breath, so we are God-breathed into life; were the other creatures?  And His Breath is not just oxygen, because we can pump oxygen into a dead body, and that will not bring it to life.  God’s Breath is Life itself. (Our True Father on Fathers’ Day)

And think about this, the air we inhale is also exhaled, as is and was the air that every creature from time immemorial breathed in and out.  We’re connected in some fundamental way. So, while we aren’t likely to breathe the same atom of oxygen that Brad Pitt did, every breath we take has, at one time or another, been associated with another living organism.  It’s recycled of course.  The plants breathing in the carbon dioxide we exhale give us back the oxygen we need, but if the plants are polluted, is the air they return to us also polluted?  Once again, a reminder that we are connected to all of life.   

We know that we have polluted air, and not just with the industrial waste and smog.  But do you think that our air can be polluted with anger, or division, or fear? 

What if the air we breath in can be further polluted by us with the stuff we carry around: shame, fear, anger, and then we breath that out?  There is actually a contemplative compassion meditation practice called Tonglen where the practice is to breathe in someone’s suffering and to purposefully allow that air to be transformed by the gifts of our heart:  peace, kindness, goodness, wisdom, and then exhaled for the benefit of the suffering person or for the world.  Interesting, isn’t it? 
Just some things that I’m pondering.

Morning Talk: Cheryl Smith

Philippians Overview
Joy is to be resident in our lives
John 15:11 Over
800 rejoicing texts (Pollyanna)
Psalm 16:11
Joy in our culture can appear
This is due to a misunderstanding of Joy

Our joy resides and is due to Jesus
Who He is
What He has done
His promises

Known as the Epistle of Joy
Joy mentioned in every chapter
Paul in prison in Rome
Awaiting verdict from his trial before Nero
This epistle tells us about Joy

Perspective of Joy
Pursuit of Joy
Priorities of Joy
Practice of Joy

Philippians 1- Perspective of Joy
Verse 1- Servant of Jesus
Paul’s perspective
Paul was not the victim of Nero, Rome, unscrupulous men, false accusations
Paul was a servant of the Jesus the Messiah
As such wherever Paul was – Her served Jesus
Whatever Paul did- He served Jesus
However Paul acted was in service to Jesus
Paul gave everything to Jesus – Use this Lord for your glory
Therefore, Paul found reasons to rejoice even in his trial and imprisonment
Great mission field – preached Christ and the whole palace guard heard it
Emboldened others
Even those who didn’t like Paul were preaching Jesus.

Verse 21 – For me to live is Christ and to die is gain
With a perspective like that joy is assured
Keep me here and I will continue to serve Jesus with joy
Kill me and I go to be with the Lord in the presence of Joy

Philippians 2- Pursuit of Joy

The pursuit of Joy is to have the mind of Christ
Verse 5, “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation taking on the form of a servant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death on the cross.”

The mind of Christ will guarantee Joy in our fellowship and relationships
Consolation in Christ
Comfort of Love
Fellowship in the Spirit
Affection and Mercy
These done with the mind of Christ will result in joy
Like minded- same pursuits
Same love
One accord
One mind

Vv. !2-18 God is working individually with us and corporately to work in us a desire and deliberation toward His good will
He works this through our circumstances
He works this in us as we hold on to the Word of Life
Paul then mentions two men who had this joy imparting mind of Christ

Philippians 3—the Priorities of Joy
Not rules and regulations that others try to add to Jesus
Not accomplishments of the past
Not the measurements of society

These priorities lead to: Comparison, competition, criticism, conceit and condemnation
Priorities are:
The knowledge of Jesus Christ
To know Jesus as much as humanly possible on earth
To be found in Jesus
To claim His righteousness as my own
To know the power of Jesus
To fellowship or join with Jesus in my suffering
To forge forward
Leave the past to the past
Find the purpose of Christ for me
Eagerly wait for Jesus to come
Transformation of our lowly bodies to be glorious like His

Philippians 4—Practices of Joy

Help others to get along – Euodia and Syntyche
Practice His presence – Rejoice in the Lord
Take everything to the Lord in prayer
Every anxiety
Every problem
Every dilemma
Every request
With thanksgiving – thanksgiving reminds us of
All we have
All God has already done

Filter your thoughts – Keep only the thoughts that are:
(Cognitive Therapy)
Good report
Praise worthy

Learn (a process that you apply yourself) to be content by
Drawing on Christ’s strength
Knowing that God will provide all your needs always
Give as the Philippians did (18) be generous

God desires that His children be Joyful Children
Take time to think of all the reasons you have to rejoice in the Lord
His presence
His productivity in your life
His peace

Joy is promised for us through the work of Christ for us and in us
We can rejoice today because we have the perspective, pursuit, priorities and practices of Christ which will produce Joy!

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