Sunday, September 13, 2020

Philippians 2.1-13: Empty and Full

Paul wants the Christians at Philippi to make his joy complete (Philippians 2:2). Apparently, his joy is currently only partially full. Paul also reminds the Philippians that Christ emptied himself (Philippians 2:7). What was full has been voluntarily emptied. 

The whole question of whether you see a glass as half-empty or half-full has become some sort of personality evaluation. Are you an optimist? A pessimist? A surrealist? (See the graphic below.) Paul's play with words considers the polarities of empty and filled. 
(Left) Tom Brown. Half Empty, Half Full

Joy? Should be filled to the brim. Jesus? Voluntarily emptied himself. In fact, in just a couple of verses, Jesus will talk about being "poured out." (Philippians 2:17) I wonder if we get sidetracked testing ourselves to see if we are optimists or pessimists. Perhaps a better question is whether you have a glass or a pitcher or anything that can hold joy and will you give Paul a refill? Do you appreciate Jesus' pouring himself out for you? Do you pour out yourself for others as Jesus has done for you? Do you still care for yourself while you are emptying yourself for others? 

This week on Art&Faith Matters on empty man.

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