In Acts 16 we are told of the encounter Paul had in a vision with a man from Macedonia. In the vision the man asked Paul to come to Macedonia and help them. Paul’s immediate response? We must go there and preach the Gospel! Paul knew of no greater help than this; the good news of Jesus the Christ.
I have stated before that Paul had never gotten over the impact that Jesus had on him. When Paul encountered Jesus his life radically changed. His life did not get easier, mind you. Instead his life became much more difficult. As a matter of fact the more Paul preached Jesus the more difficult his life became. What does this have to do with the Philippians? Finish reading Acts 16. Paul teaches at the riverside and a whole household gets saved and baptized. Then the next week while heading toward the river Paul is accosted by a demon possessed girl and he casts out the demon. The owners get mad and Paul winds up in jail.
Now think of it this way. You have been a Christian one week. Your spiritual mentor ends up in jail for casting out demons, and then to top it all of he and his companions are beaten and whipped. How would you have fared if that was your first week as a Christian? I would have flunked out.
Now think of what Paul did and what impact it had on the Philippian believers. Paul started a worship and prayer service in the jail. Now that is weird enough, but then when the earth shakes and the prisoners are freed from their shackles no one leaves. Paul has to stop the prison keeper from committing suicide thinking they had all escaped. What does the prison keeper do? He asks them, “what do I need to do to be saved?”
Then, in the morning they are told to leave quietly and Paul makes the magistrates openly let the go. What does Paul do next? He goes and comforts the believers. I don’t know about you but I would still be stinging from getting beaten the night before. This is how the Philippians received the gospel. From a man who would endure whatever came his way yet never relenting from his task to preach JESUS!
Is it a wonder that these people become the ones to support Paul when they can barely support themselves? Is that what seeing a truly Godly man does? I hope so. An I pray to God that I can become like Paul in that regard. I pray that as I get to know more about God that I would not fail to see God for who He is and be so enthralled that I give everything and more to Him.