“I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings,
becoming like him in his death.”
The apostle Paul speaks of the power of serving Christ with a strength and power that only Christ can give through His Spirit in us.
Each of us believers should want to serve Christ as passionately and determinedly as Paul.
The apostle Paul offered himself to the LORD in complete service with his whole life. He would gladly suffer and die if that was what the LORD appointed him to in order to glorify God and help bring God’s chosen ones to a saving faith.
Presently I am reading the “Authorized Biography” of Elisabeth Elliot, written by Ellen Vaughn. The book has made quite an impact on me, as I am sure it has for so many. Elisabeth served as a missionary in Ecuador among the Waodani Indians in the Amazon jungle. This tribe had savagely killed her husband and four of his colleagues. Yet Elisabeth went back into the jungle to serve these men and women with her four-year-old daughter. Many judged her harshly. Some envied her courage and determination, but few would have dared to do what she did. I believe she could say along with Paul and following her LORD’s example, “thy will be done.” Elisabeth was not afraid of partaking in the sufferings of Christ.
As the story progresses, the man who had speared Elisabeth’s husband to death became a Christian. He travelled the globe, telling others about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As a result, God brought many men and women to a saving faith. The LORD had used Jim Elliot as his chosen servant to the Waodani people. His wife was influential in being used by God in bringing many individuals to a saving faith through her ministry to the Waodani tribe, and later her writing and speaking ministry also reaching out around the globe. Jim and Elisabeth had one daughter named Valerie. Knowing the faithful parents she had, she is serving the LORD in some courageous measure.
Many of us are thankful to live with Christ’s resurrection power, helping us achieve a comfortable Christian lifestyle in America. How many of us would partake willingly and even ask to engage in the sufferings of Christ?
That is a question I asked myself as I read the Bible Verse from Philippians 3:10 shown above, and as I read the book about Elisabeth Elliot’s life.
There is a prayer in the Biography of Elisabeth Elliot where she totally surrenders her life, her destination, her everything to God, regardless of where He would take her and lead her and have her serve. She would give for Jesus her all, even her life.
The apostle Paul and Jim and Elisabeth Elliot, along with the throngs of heroes of faith that have given their lives in service to Christ could say, “I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death.”
These were selfless people who gave their all for Christ as He gave His all for us. They did not give an iota for the comforts of this world, or for the opinions of man. They lived fully for God and for His will.
“Thy will be done.”
Not everyone is called to this kind of service to the LORD, perhaps only those with a faith as bold as it takes, given to them by God first.
I wonder what would happen if we prayed Philippians 3:10 as a prayer.
Stand still and consider the wondrous works of God.