(Scripture references all from the book of Philippians)

There is a saying,” When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”

Paul’s Struggles
• Imprisoned
1:7
Paul was in jail, innocent of the charges, and thanking them for remembering him.
• Potential death
2:17
Paul could have been killed for his work for God.
• Enemies
3:18
There were those trying to stop the spread of the gospel
• Church conflict
4:2
Even those who were Christians were fighting
• Neglect
4:13
Some of the churches were not helping with his work

How did Paul cope with all this? How did Paul “make lemonade”? In order to make the drink lemonade sugar must be added. Where did Paul get the sweetness to soften his burdens? Where can we find sweetness to keep going?

Sweetness From:

God’s Presence

• Grace & peace
1:7; 4:7-9
Paul depended on God to help him cope with his burdens.
• Resurrection
2:9; 3:11
Jesus was raised and all believers will be raised to live with God
• Revelation
3:15
God gave us His Word to help us live for Him.
• Strength
4:13
God helps us do all things for Him.
• Provision
4:19
God gives us all we need to live a rich Spiritual life.

Positive Events
• Word spreading
1:12-18
Paul was glad that many in the prison were hearing the gospel.
• Helper healed
2:27
God healed a person who was working with Paul.
• Contribution
4:10
Paul was happy for the opportunities people had to give.
We are blessed with rich traditions in our nation of thankfulness. We are surrounded by many opportunities to give and to share with others.

Kind People
Philippians

1:2-5. We need people who build us up and who help us see goodness
• Preachers.
1:16
Paul was thankful for those who were working for the gospel.
• Timothy
2:22
We need to look around for those we can depend on
• Epaphroditus
2:29-30
People were a tremendous source of strength to Paul as he was in the prison

Purposefulness
• Proclaim Christ
1:20-22
Paul had a purpose – to preach the gospel
• Help church
1:23-25
Paul wanted to help the Christians grow
• Heaven focused
3:20-21
Paul never forgot where he was headed

We need to keep focused on God and His purpose for our lives and we can cope with the lemons of life.

—Robert Lee, 11-7-04, a.m

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