My head snapped up to look at the TV. I wasn’t expecting to hear those words through the speakers.
“Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus.” There on the TV screen was one of my friends reading Philippians 2:5-8. It was from our wedding video which we had pulled out to show our kids on our 10-year anniversary.
I was shocked that I didn’t remember we had selected that Scripture to be read at our wedding as an anthem for how we wanted to love one another in our marriage by serving each other.
It was such a sweet moment because Philippians 2:5-11 has woven itself into my heart over the years changing me and molding me into the image of Christ.
My history with this Scripture began 5 years before my wedding day when I worked in the kitchen at Kanakuk Kamps as a “kitchie” (which is how they endearingly referred to those who worked in the kitchen). I didn’t want to work in the kitchen. I wanted the more glamorous role of counselor; and if not that, I wanted to work in the office where there was more autonomy.
But no, I was assigned to the kitchen where I woke earlier than anyone else to prep dishes, set out food and get silverware ready. Three times a day, I cleaned leftover food off plates, scrubbed giant pots and pans and wiped down counter tops. Every meal ended in sweeping up chunks of food off the floor and emptying overflowing trashcans.
That summer was a far cry from being glamorous.
It was better than glamorous, however – it was refining.
In those quiet early morning hours before meal prep began, I met with the Lord and read Philippians 2:5-11 learning how Jesus made himself nothing and poured Himself out for others.
That summer was spent building humility and a servant-nature in me due to the power of God’s Word intersecting with my life experience at that time.
Fast forward 10+ years and I was in the throes of potty training our son. The process took much longer than I expected and was dirtier and messier than I had ever wanted to be.
As I’m literally on my hands and knees cleaning up pee and poop for the umpteenth time, the Holy Spirit gently brought these words to mind, “Make yourself nothing, take on the nature of a servant.”
Cleaning up my son’s messes reminded me that this season was again refining me; it was teaching me humility and what it looked like to pour myself out and make myself nothing for someone else.
Philippians 2:5-11 is a powerful creed on the nature and character of Christ. We learn how, even though Jesus was fully God, He didn’t cling to his royal status. Instead He humbled himself and surrendered to the call of obedience to lay His life down for you and me.
What a Savior!
This Scripture teaches us much about the beauty of our Savior while also encouraging us to have that same servant-hearted mind of Christ.
How are you pouring yourself out for others? How are you making yourself nothing in order to serve others? These are important questions for us to ponder.
Heed these words friend. Surrender to the refining work of the Father and watch God mold you and shape you into the image of our Savior!