Friday, October 24, 2008

Philippians 2:19-24

Hello Everyone!

As I was researching our Scriptures for this week...

over and over, the theme "Friend" or "Kindred Spirit"

came up from reading verse 20 ~

"I have no one else like him..." ~ New International Version (NIV)

"For I have no (other) man likeminded..." ~ King James Version (KJV)

"For I have no one {else} of kindred spirit..." ~ New American Standard Bible


The word "likeminded" comes from the Greek word

"isopsychos" which means equal in soul.

When I heard "kindred spirit" I immediately thought of the novel,

Anne (spelled with an "e"!) of Green Gables written by

Lucy Maud Montgomery published in 1908.

I was first introduced to this series by my husband's

sweet Aunt Ruthie. She had the whole series on VHS,

and we sat and watched them up into the wee hours of the

morning when we visited her in her home in Avon Park, FL.

Here is a quote from the book:
(Marilla says) "...Matthew is a most ridiculous man." "I think he's lovely," said Anne reproachfully. "He is so very sympathetic. He didn't mind how much I talked--he seemed to like it. I felt that he was a kindred spirit as soon as ever I saw him."

For those of you "Anne of Green Gables" fans,

you can go to

and read Ms. Montgomery's bio ~

(she was a pastor's wife...WHO KNEW!!)

You can also read all (I believe) of her works at this website!

So......since we are talking about friends this week,

Here are two ~ read 2 ~ videos I found...

The first one is for you animal lovers out there...


Now this one is about friendship, also...

Even though it is an "oldie, but goodie", hang with it until the end

and then you will see what I mean!!

OK...sniff, sniff...clearing throat...

Man! That Chonda can have you laughing from your toes

and the next thing you know, you are wiping the moisture from the corner

of your eyes from thinking seriously and soberly from your heart!

Now...I wonder who this "kindred spirit" and "likeminded" friend-person

is that we are talking about in verses 19-24?

"I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, that I also may be cheered when I receive news about you.

I have no one else like him, who takes genuine interest in your welfare.

For everyone looks out for his own interests, not those of Jesus Christ.

But you know that Timothy has proved himself, because as a son with his father

he has served with me in the work of the gospel.

I hope, therefore, to send him as soon as I see how things go with me.

And I am confident in the Lord that I myself will come soon."

None other than Timothy!

This "young fellow" is mentioned 25 times in 25 verses in the NIV,

not to mention that 2 Books of the Bible named after him!

He was designated to the office of an evangelist (1 Tim. 4:14)

and went with Paul in his journey through Phrygia, Galatia, and Mysia;

also to Troas and Philippi and Berea (Acts 17:14).

Then he followed Paul to Athens

and was sent by him with Silas on a mission to Thessaloniki

(Acts 17:15; I Thessalonians 3:2).

We next find him at Corinth (I Thessalonians 1:1; II Thessalonians 1:1) with Paul.

He passes now out of sight for a few years,

and is again noticed as being with Paul at Ephesus (Acts 19:22),

where he is sent on a mission into Macedonia.

He accompanied Paul afterwards into Asia (Acts 20:4)

where he was with him for some time.

When Paul was a prisoner at Rome,

Timothy joined him (Philemon 1:1),

where it appears he also suffered imprisonment (Hebrews 13:23).

During Paul's second imprisonment he wrote to Timothy,

asking him to rejoin him as soon as possible, and to bring with him certain things

which he had left at Troas, his cloak and parchments (II Timothy 4:13).

(Shewww...I don't know about you, but just reading that wore me out!!

He was a busy man!)

According to later tradition, Paul ordained Timothy

as Bishop of
Ephesus in the year 65,

where he served for 15 years.

In the year 80, Timothy tried to halt a pagan procession of idols,

ceremonies and songs.

In response to his preaching of the Gospel, the angry pagans beat him, dragged

him through the
streets and stoned him to death.

Here are some artist's renditions of what they think Timothy looked like:

He is usually shown holding a big book like the Bible,

or a scroll, because in 2 Timothy 3:15, Paul is talking to Timothy

and says..."and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures,

which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus."

Timothy's grandmother Lois and mother Eunice are mentioned in

2 Timothy 1:15. In Acts 16:1, we find that his mother was a Jew,

but his father was a Greek and not mentioned again.

I am sure that Timothy found a "father figure" in Paul

and Paul definitely found a son in Timothy.

Being "likeminded" does not mean Paul and Timothy always agreed,

but it does mean that being alongside each other was easy so that

neither had to work hard at the relationship

and things flowed smoothly between them.

Verse 20 ~ "...who takes a genuine interest in your welfare."

**Timothy was the "Real Deal"...

Timothy's interest in the Philippian church's welfare was a sign of his inner

character of compassion. Timothy was a true shepherd.

He was concerned to the point of being burdened.

**He was "seasoned"...

Verse 22 ~ "But you know that Timothy has proved himself..."

Have you ever seasoned a cast iron frying pan?

You have to wash (baptize) the pan thoroughly with soap and water.

Rinse thoroughly.

Place it on the stove at a low temperature until it is completely dry.

Coat the pan with lard or cooking oil (oil of the Holy Spirit)...

HEAT (trials and testing) the oven to 500 degrees and bake the pan

for one hour ~ upside down!

Timothy was seasoned...he had proven himself...

he could let "things slide off easier and not stick"

better than a new Christian. He knew how to "let go and let God!"

**You get Tim, you get me...

Verse 23 ~ "I hope, therefore, to send him..."

They shared the same passion and the same heartbeat for the church in Philippi.

Though Paul could not be there himself, he felt responsible for their spiritual

welfare. Here again, is an example of self-sacrificing love,

the previous examples in Chapter 2 are the Lord Jesus and Paul himself.

Both were willing to pour out their lives to death as a drink offering.*

Now we have Timothy and Epaphroditus. (who we will discuss next week)

Talk about a sacrifice!! Here Paul is in house arrest in Rome and he

is giving up his likeminded son in the Lord to the people of Philippi!

Don't you think that he would like to have him there to visit him

and to care for his needs, if allowed? W.O.W.

What a sacrifice!

Which brings me to these questions...

><>Do we have anything in our lives that we are pouring ourselves out to

that is eternal?

><>Do we have anything in our lives that we show a self-sacrificing love to?

><>Or do we show a self-loving attitude ~ it is all about me?

><>Do we have a friend-making attitude?

><>Do we know that to have a friend is to be a friend?

><>Do we have or have had a kindred spirit with someone?

Let's examine our hearts this week and see if we even have it in us to

do this self-sacrificing love...

and if we do...

what will we end up with?????

J.O.Y. smileys

Until next week,

Debbie G.
(Resources:, and the Online Commentary listed in my left sidebar under "Links".)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Philippians 2:16-18

Hello Everyone!

I made this Spaghetti Sauce recently

and thought...
“I need to put this in the Bible Study blog!!” I found this in my

hometown’s paper in Greensburg, Indiana years ago.

City og Greensburg Indiana Logo

I have so enjoyed making it, because it is quick, fresh tasting

cheaper to make than buying jar spaghetti sauce.

(which I have done many times, also!!)


Here it is...

“Fast Cooking, Slow Tasting Spaghetti Sauce”

(This makes about 4 cups. You may want to double or triple the recipe.

Bob and I can get 4 servings total from this.)

3 TBLS. Olive Oil (this makes it taste really good!)

1-28 oz. Can of Crushed Tomatoes

1-15 oz. Can of Tomato Sauce

1 TBLS. Minced Dehydrated Onion

½ Tsp. Minced Dehydrated Garlic (I use the jar minced garlic or fresh)

½ tsp. Dried Basil

¼ Tsp. Black Pepper

1 Tsp. Oregano

½ Tsp Dried Parsley

(FYI, just in case you do not shop the Dollar Stores...

you can get these spices at very reasonable prices there!)

Heat the olive oil in a 6 qt. saucepan over medium heat.

Add the crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce.

Add the remaining ingredients.

Blend thoroughly; simmer for 30 minutes over a low heat, stirring often.

For Mushroom Sauce, saute’ one drained 4 ½ oz. jar of mushrooms in the olive oil.

(or use fresh mushrooms) Continue directions for the basic sauce.

For Meat Sauce, brown ½ pound of ground beef or turkey in a pan.

Drain off grease, if you have some. Add to basic sauce during the last 10 minutes of

simmering. to our main purpose ~ God’s Word!!
We are looking at 3 verses this week ~ 16, 17 & 18.

Verse 16 - “as you hold out the Word of life-in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.”

Verse 17 – “But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you.”

Verse 18 - “So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.”

As you “hold out the Word of life”...

Some footnotes show “or hold on to” for this phrase.

This gives me two mental pictures:

1.) Picture someone that you are talking to in conversation about their life’s

They are physically or mentally wringing their hands

in hopelessness.

You “hold out the Word of life” to them to place in those wringing hands.

You tell them God’s promises.

You tell them being a Christian is not always easy,

but you have the promise of Someone Who is always there for you, 24/7...

even though you may not feel it at the time, you will when you look back at your


2.) I talked to one of my daughters yesterday on the phone.

My heart swelled with joy as she was telling me of a tension filled time in her life

when she clung to her Bible. That was her lifeline.

I had a time in my own life when...what is it that they say...

the thing that you fear the most comes upon you?

Welllll...that happened to me and I slept with my Bible and carried it around

during the was what gave me my hope, peace and guidance through one of

the most difficult times in my life.

...“that I did not run or labor for nothing.”

I don’t know about you, but I can hardly watch the Olympics.

When I see an athlete, who has prepared for this moment in time,

for the majority of their years on earth, and then in one split second...

their hopes and dreams are dashed.... Ughhhh...

I can hardly look at the TV screen.

This is what I hear Paul saying here.

Let’s go to the city of Rome in our imagination...
the thrilling metropolis of gladiators, chariots and empires.

But we will not stop at the coliseum or palace.

We are going to a drab little room.

As we open the creaking door,

we see a room without windows,

lit only by an oil lamp sitting on a table.

Immediately, we are assaulted by the musty odor in the room

and the taste of the dirt floor rising up to our mouths.

Inside we see a man seated in the far corner.

He is an older fellow, shoulders stooped and balding...

stooped, because his eyesight is dimmed

and he needs to have the paper close to his eyes,

even though he writes in big letters.

We hear the noise in the street
outside this room in this house-arrest place.

We hear the rumble of the carts.

We hear the horses’ hoofs on the stone pavement.

The world is passing by this older and bent man
but he cannot join the crowd

outside in the sunshine.

The oil lamp illuminates the gleam of the chains on his hands and feet.

And...chained to him is a guard from the Roman army

whose sword glistens in the glow from the oil lamp.

As he struggles to even wipe his dirty hands on his rough and scratchy clothes,

he has every reason to be in a slump!

But his main concern is...

with the salvation of the lost than with vindication for himself.

One commentary said that he had been serving God for 20 years

(like a trained athlete)

and his main concern was that on Judgment Day,

he would see his fellow believers and that he would not have labored

(and trained) in vain!!

“But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service

coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you.”

Drink offering...

In the Old Testament, the drink offering would be the final offering of a sacrifice.

One commentator said that the wine would be poured over the burning sacrifice

which resulted in a steam or vapor going up to heaven.

This would symbolize the ending of our life.

Also, to me a drink offering means giving something to the Lord
that you wanted to

keep for yourself, that was precious to you.

OK...these people, the Israelites were in a desert...

It would not be easy to get their wine or water for that matter.

They could not take their camel and drive to the nearest WalMart

and purchase a week’s supply.

I would think that ANYTHING liquid in a desert would be a precious

commodity and you would want to hoard and protect...

not just pour it out willy-nilly on a dead animal!!!

This brings me to several life application thoughts...

What are we holding onto in our lives that we think that we cannot ever give up?

What are we holding onto that we would NEVER want to give over to God?

What are we holding onto that we say...

"nah...I had better keep that for myself
in these shaky times

with no relief in sight...

Are we holding onto our money when God says

“Give it to that person over there?”

Are we holding onto our very lives and not giving them as a sacrifice to God?

Please allow me to repeat myself...

these people were in a desert and had NO IDEA when or if they would be able

restock, refuel, replenish their supplies.

They had wait or go, depending on a pillar of fire or a cloud!!

Could we do that today?

But here in lies the SECRET.

Oprah has her SECRET...

The Bible has its “SECRET”.

The secret is....
when you give yourself completely over to God and say...

I will move when You say to move,

I will stay when You say to stay,

I will give when You say to give...

That is the secret to having JOY!!

“So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.”

May you and I seek that joy, that joy unspeakable. AMEN.

Until next week,

Debbie G.

(References: Online Commentary listed in the "Links" sidebar of the blog, 8 sentences from Max Lucado's Introduction to the Book of Philippians in the Inspirational Study Bible and the HOLY SPIRIT!!!)

Friday, October 10, 2008

Hello Everyone!

It is with a heavy heart that I write this today.

My sweet friend, Laura McCarty went home to be with the Lord

Tuesday at 4:00 p.m.

She was 39, has a wonderful husband, 2 boys, Logan and Evan,

ages 8 and 6 and had just had a baby girl, Delaney a few months ago.

The following is an email from her husband to all concerned friends:

Sad News

It is with a very broken heart that I write to tell you that my sweet bride Laura passed away on Tuesday after a long, hard fight. Laura (Lori to me) continued to witness Jesus Christ to family, friends, nurses and doctors right to the end. I am absolutely devastated by the loss of such an amazing wife and mother. I know the Kingdom of Heaven is rejoicing and I find great peace with this.

In honor of Laura, I want to show the Psalm that I felt that God gave to me

for her, Psalm 57:

"Have mercy on me,, O God, have mercy on me, for in You my soul takes refuge.

I will take refuge in the shadow of Your wings until the disaster has passed.

I cry out to God Most High to God, who fulfills His purpose for me.

He sends from heaven and saves me, rebuking those who hotly pursue me,

God sends His love and His faithfulness.

I am in the midst of lions,

I lie among ravenous beasts-

men whose teeth are spears and arrows,

whose tongues are sharp swords.

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;

let your glory be over all the earth.

They spread a net for my feet-

I was bowed down in distress.

They dug a pit in my path-

but they have fallen in it themselves.

My heart is steadfast, O God,

my heart is steadfast;

I will sing and make music.

Awake, my soul!

Awake, harp and lyre!

I will awaken the dawn.

I will praise you, O lord, among the nations;

I will sing of you among the peoples.

For great is Your love,

reaching to the heavens;

Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;

let Your glory be over all the earth."

My favorite portion of this Psalm is verse one:

"I will take refuge in the shadow of Your wings..."

I had another friend tell me this week that

she feels like she is just walking in the dark...

that she doesn't know where her life's purpose

is leading her. The things she thought God was telling

her to do...did not work out at all...closed doors...

She mentioned this to her mentor at church

and this precious lady told her that she may be

walking in the dark, but it is because


Comforting, holding close, protecting, until

the storm passes...

This is my prayer for Laura's family and for my friend,

that they feel God so close that they know that He is

holding them close, protecting them and comforting them

until the day is brighter and the sun shines again.

Please pray for this family.

Bob and I are leaving to go to Indiana for the funeral.

Until next week,

Debbie G.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Philippians 2:15

Hi Everyone!

Since we are talking about being "lights" this week,

here are two cartoons I found...

Trudy O. McConnell

This week we are going to look at Philippians 2:15

and finish our theme from the last post ~ "Whine or Shine"...

Are you a Whiner or a Shiner?

" that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe..." (New International Version)

Or, you can pull it up the verse yourself and have it

handy-dandy to look at by clicking on one of my Bible links

on the left sidebar. :O)

"Pure and blameless..." ~ seems impossible, doesn't it?

In the commentary at

(See the link I have for commentary on the left sidebar)

they say that "blameless and innocent" concerns the

intrinsic character of a person.

I like saying that word..."intrinsic"
intrinsic counseling
~ kinda rolls off of

your tongue...

The first time I ever really was aware of this word

was when I starting teaching a parenting class.

They talked a lot about intrinsic vs extrinsic.

Intrinsic means "inwardly" and extrinsic...

you got it...means "outwardly"...

Paul's desire for the Philippians is that there be

no intrinsic characteristics found in them that would

find them guilty on Judgment Day.

(See the next verse, 16.)

This is a good explanation ~ He wants them to observe

the Commandments and requirements of the Lord in

such a way that they were blameless...AND THAT THEY

were quick to deal with the sin in their lives.

This is not synonymous with sinless, for that is only

seen in Christ!

I think that this reminds me of King David.

I think that this is why God called him a man after His

own heart ~ David was quick to deal with the sin in his

life. Sometimes, it had to be pointed out to him that

God saw what he did and he was not hiding anything...

"in a crooked and depraved generation..."

What would Paul think if he could come back to earth

and witness first-hand our generation's moral

(cough cough) "fiber" today?

Crooked = "skolios"

I don't know about you, but when I first read that word,

I immediately thought of "scoliosis"

or curvature of the


very painful....

very unnatural....

very not-in-the-original-plans for our bodies.

"Skolios" in the Greek means the nature of those who do not walk in the
straightness and uprightness that God commands but walk in a cramped
and crooked way that merits punishment. (Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., &
Bromiley, G. W. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament. Eerdmans)

very painful...

very unnatural...

very not-in-the-plans for our life... which you shine like stars in the universe...

Zowee...where do we start with this beautiful part

of the 15th verse?

"As someone has said we are not searchlights or spotlights but lights in the fog.
Fog lights prevent tragic shipwreck and eternal loss!
Searchlights blind our eyes."

I remember when I was in Junior brother

Don was my Principal...yep..that's right!! But he took

good care of me!

Anyway...I was staying with Don and Rowena,

my sister-in-law, the last few months of my 8th grade.

My mom and dad had moved to another city and I

needed to finish out my schooling in the 8th grade. brother would wake me up in the morning

by pulling me out of bed, making me walk into the

bathroom with ALL of the lights on...

talk about a spotlight, I felt as though I was looking

straight in to one of those store spotlights that shine

in the sky to announce a grand opening...

That hurts!!...but did I mention that

they did take good care of me...

I like this word picture the best:

"The picture is that of a procession at night, in a crooked and distorted age,
in which torchbearers are going and holding high the blazing torches,
so that those following can see how to walk in this sin-darkened world."
(Dobson,E G, Charles Feinberg, E Hindson, Woodrow Kroll, H L. Wilmington:
KJV Bible Commentary: Nelson)

We are to be lights powered by heaven,

or the Holy Spirit...

not spotlights that hurt people's feelings

and turn them off.

"The darker the night, the brighter the light appears.
Christians are lights or light-bearers.
They cannot create any light,
but they can reflect the glory of the Lord so that others may see Jesus in them."

I also think of the candlestick glowing in the fragrant

darkness of the Holy of Holy in the Tabernacle in the

Wilderness. You came in from the bright light of the

desert sun, into this area that had to be dark with all

of the coverings making up the "tent".

But...there in the midst of the darkness was this

beautiful pure (pure and blameless) gold candlestick or

lampstand, (Exodus 25:31-40)

filled with oil which represents the Holy Spirit...

comforting, guiding, making clear the way to walk.

Oh how we need to always make sure our candlesticks

are full of the oil of the Holy Spirit, lighting the area

around us as we sit in His Presence and "soak up"

His radiance. Amen.

Until next week, may God keep you in the hollow of

His hands,

Debbie G.