< Back


Therefore, my brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, dear friends! Philippians 4:1

Listen: Philippians 3 and 4


Paul is writing in Philippians to a church in crisis. Some people are in the process of bailing on their faith because of external persecution and internal conflict.

As Paul attempts to rescue something that is in real danger of fading or failing, he describes what it means to “know Christ” (Philippians 3:10) and grow in his grace. Using the imagery of a running race, he urges the Philippian believers to move forward in their faith. By doing so, they will experience real joy under pressure.

This past weekend, Senior Pastor Jeff Manion asked four “disruptive” questions: What do I want? How am I running? Who am I following? What am I waiting for?

How we answer these questions will help us determine if we’re “staying in the race.”


As you welcome God into your week today, consider how you are “running.” Turn to page 42 of your Philippians: Choosing Joy Under Pressure journal and answer the question, “What do I want?” Answer it honestly by completing the sentence, “I want ________________.” Then write a prayer of confession to God. Maybe write something like, “God, I know I am not running as I need to be. I know that much of what I want is not what you want. Please open my heart and my eyes to help me clearly see what you want.” Pray this prayer before you begin your day and before you go to sleep this evening.

Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.