by Rev Jason Phua
Bible Readings: Philippians 2:19-3:3; Psalm 73:1-28
READ (Verse chosen for reflection)
Philippians 2:29-30 “Welcome him in the Lord with great joy, and honour men like him, because he almost died for the work of Christ, risking his life to make up for the help you could not give me.”
Epaphroditus almost died for the work of Christ. This fellow worker in the Lord risked his life for the Gospel. Hence, for someone like that, Paul urged the Philippians to “welcome him in the Lord with great joy and honour men like him”. Paul’s commendation of Epaphroditus brought to mind the predicament of a fellow Christian worker in the Philippines. This fellow worker in the Lord shared that her ministry with the youths in the slums of Manila is nothing short of life threatening. At any time of the day, she can hear gunshots even as she tries to minister to the youths at risk. Sadly, many of these youths came from families whose fathers are drug abusers; some are even drug lords.
Like Epaphroditus, people like the Christian worker in Manila should be honoured. Her story inspired me to persevere and continue to serve with joy even if there are many challenges ahead. I also believe we should pray more often for our brothers and sisters in various parts of the world; who risk their lives on a daily basis for the Gospel. Unfortunately, there are many Christians in Singapore who would not spare a thought for these faithful servants of the Lord. Instead, they chose to honour “glamorous” preachers who spew forth untruths that itching ears like to hear (ref: 2 Timothy 4:3). How sad!
Lord God, help us to honour more of those who risk their lives for the sake of the Gospel. Give us strength and love to keep them in constant prayer. Amen.