Paul told the Christians in Philippi to “shine like stars in the sky.”
I love that word picture, don’t you?
Have you ever been outside in the country on a very clear night and looked up at the stars?
One thing I love about going to my parents’ house is being able to see the stars with unhindered clarity.
They live in the country, so there’s very little light pollution hindering the stars’ beauty.
Instead, when we look into the sky we can usually see glistening, beautiful diamonds. It looks like an artist’s canvas, background painted deep blue with sparkling glitter added in intricate detail.
That’s the word picture Paul painted for us in Philippians 2:14-16: “Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation. Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life…”
Just as a star sparkles in the night sky, so also we should shine in a world that is darkened by sin.
What does this look like in real life, though? What is it that makes us shine like stars in the sky?
I think we can find the answer in the larger context of Philippians 2.
Reading through verses 1-16, here are some ways believers in Jesus shine like stars.
How Christians Shine Like Stars in the Sky:
- Verse 3 – They are unselfish.
- Verses 3-11 – They are humble.
- Verse 4 – They look out for the needs and interests of others.
- Verses 8, 12 – They walk in obedience to God.
- Verse 14- They do everything without complaining or arguing.
- Verse 14 – They live in purity.
- Verse 16 – They hold out the Word of Truth.
Imagine a church where all the members did each of these things.
Imagine a world where people who claimed to believe in Jesus actually lived like it.
I can rarely go a day without complaining or arguing about something. I can also rarely go a day without being selfish…at least a little bit. My suspicion is, I’m not alone.
The truth is, if I started doing these things – if I stopped thinking about myself, started constantly thinking of others, stopped complaining about the inconveniences or irritations of life, and started living in complete purity – my light would shine a lot brighter.
If we want to shine like stars in the sky, we have to start by being honest with ourselves. Are we shining brightly like the stars…or is our light clouded by our own selfish actions?
If you’re feeling brave, leave a comment sharing which one of the ways listed above you struggle with most?
*photo courtesy: unsplash