Your Source of Security

Read: Philippians 1:19-30

Conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ . . . striving together as one for the faith of the gospel without being frightened in any way. (v. 27 NIV)

Anxiety is everywhere today. Each day the newspaper gives us new reasons to be anxious: war, terrorism, economic troubles. When it seems like everything we have is threatened, it’s hard to be thankful. Anxiety is made worse when you locate your security in something other than the love of Christ. Anxiety can warp your sense of perspective, making you fearful, bitter, and even angry at God. Anxiety is more than unpleasant; it’s mentally and spiritually dangerous. When you feel it, it is time for ruthless self-examination.

In today’s reading, Paul is waiting for an audience with Caesar that will determine whether he is freed or executed. It seems like an intolerably frightening situation. But Paul’s words reveal tremendous poise: “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” (v. 21). Essentially, Paul says, whether I live or die is no longer important to me. What matters is whether or not I am serving Christ.

Paul knew that nothing could separate him from the ultimate source of security: his identity in Christ. In Christ, even the most frightening circumstances do not have final power over you. Are you rooting your security in something that will not last—your job, your money, your family—or in the source of all security?

As you pray, confess any areas of misplaced trust and thank God for the security you can enjoy in Christ.

About the Author

Jane Olson is a college counselor and high school teacher. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and children.

This entry is part 4 of 15 in the series Habits of a Thankful Heart