I can do all things 

 This verse is an excellent one to memorize and on which to meditate:

I can do all things through him who strengthens me.  (Philippians 4:13)

And as we memorize it and meditate on it, it’s important that we understand it rightly.  

In Philippians 4, Paul was rejoicing in the Philippians’ compassion on him.  Sadly, they had no opportunity to help him.  But that was okay.  He had learned to be content in any situation.  He could be content when he was flourishing, and he could be content in poverty.  He had discovered the secret to contentment.  And the secret is that he could do all things through Christ who strengthens him.  

Now, notice this doesn’t that mean that he can do whatever he wants.  He couldn’t, for example, guarantee that his tent-making business would take off and that he’d be prosperous and could retire early.  After all, if that were the case, why ever experience poverty?  Why ever go hungry? 

No, what this is saying is that through Him who strengthens Paul, Paul could endure any circumstance that would come his way.  He could continue in obedience to Christ, regardless of the level of hardship.  And we see in Acts and in the epistles that he surely did.

Sheep, through Christ, you can endure any circumstance this life throws at you.  That doesn’t mean life will be easy.  But even when it’s hard, you can do all things through Him.

*By the way, be careful not to confuse contentment with praying your way through a situation.  Just because you’re praying about something doesn’t mean you’re content.  Contentment is being truly joyful with the circumstance you’ve been given, which is possible through Christ. 

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