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The Secret to Christian Joy

SERIES: God’s Repairs for Your Broken Spirit

Philippians 2:25-30 NIV

25 But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs.

26 For he longs for all of you and is distressed because you heard he was ill.

27 Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow.

28 Therefore I am all the more eager to send him, so that when you see him again you may be glad and I may have less anxiety.

29 Welcome him in the Lord with great joy, and honor men like him,

30 because he almost died for the work of Christ, risking his life to make up for the help you could not give me.

When it comes to progress in life, IT always comes from the BOTTOM UP and from the INSIDE OUT.

The key to having joy in your HEART is to have the right THOUGHTS in your mind.

The emotions determine how you FEEL about what’s happening.

The mind is how you THINK about what’s happening.

If you change your MIND, God will change your HEART.

Things we can ascertain about Epaphroditus:

1. He was a man of CHARACTER

2. He was a man with a SERVANTS HEART.

Ministry is a life lived for OTHERS to the glory of God

3. He was a man of COURAGE. (v. 30)

What Paul found in Epaphroditus:

· A brother to LEAN on

· A worker to LIFT with

· A soldier to LEARN from

1 Timothy 5:23 NIV – Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.

2 Timothy 4:20 – Erastus stayed in Corinth, and I left Trophimus sick in Miletus.

2 Corinthians 12:7-10 GNV – 7 But to keep me from being puffed up with pride because of the many wonderful things I saw, I was given a painful physical ailment, which acts as Satan’s messenger to beat me and keep me from being proud. 8 Three times I prayed to the Lord about this and asked him to take it away. 9But his answer was: “My grace is all you need, for my power is greatest when you are weak.” I am most happy, then, to be proud of my weaknesses, in order to feel the protection of Christ’s power over me. 10 I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and difficulties for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

· The Philippians are WORRIED about Epahroditus

· Epaphroditus is WORRIED about the Philippians being WORRIED about him.

· Paul is WORRIED about Epaphroditus being WORRIED about the Philippians being WORRIED about him.

I. Whatever is in you will come out of you when the SQUEEZE is on.

You can never tell what’s in a sponge until it is squeezed.

II. Our MIND effects our MOOD.

S-ITUATION

E-MOTIONS

A-NALYSIS

T-RUTH

III. I must always remember God is always in CONTROL!

Why would God allow the sickness?

1. God’s own GLORY

2. Paul’s GROWTH

Philippians 4:10-14 NIV – 10 I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. 11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength. 14 Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles.

3. The Church’s GOOD

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