One of the main reasons God doesn’t use us the way we think He should is because we spend our days pursuing our own will and going about our work in our own power and strength. You see with God…less is more.
It may be shocking to learn that God wants LESS of you. In other words, we are to decrease and Christ is to increase. Paul told the church in Galatia, “I have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives within me”. When we become less and die to ourselves, God actually gives us MORE…more joy, more influence, more fruit!
In Philippians 2:19-30, Paul switches gears and gives us his travel plans for Timothy and Epaphroditus. I believe the reason he does this is to give us living, breathing examples of ordinary people living out the Gospel. The reality is that you and I can’t live out what Paul has been teaching throughout the book of Philippians in our own strength and power.
Our temptation is to read the first couple of chapters in Philippians and think we are supposed to go out and try harder…that we are supposed to serve more, sacrifice more, risk more, love more…on our own. But Paul uses Timothy and Epaphroditus to show us that these men didn’t live out the Gospel through their own merit. They were simply working OUT the salvation that God had worked IN them.
Timothy and Epaphroditus were exercising saving faith because they had decreased and Christ had increased in their lives. They show us that Jesus and Jesus alone transforms us into everyday servants worthy of emulation.