Philippians 4:1-13. Our reflections for the following 13 weeks will be based on this passage from Philippians. We invite you to weekly read all 13 verses as a way of soaking in scripture.
“I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord”. (Philippians 4:2)
Confession is good for the soul, so here’s mine! I chose this verse out of curiosity: how do you pronounce these two names? What do they mean? Names are important in many cultures, and in the bible too.
Fragrance and Fortunate.
Lovely names, names given in love.
In his letter, Paul took time to name them, he knows them by their first names. Others do too, apparently. These women were leaders, co-laborer’s of the apostle, well known and respected. Yet, leaders can disagree with each other. Is that surprising? Even for His kingdom’s sake! Interestingly, what they disagreed on was never mentioned, now forgotten. Instead, we remember their names, and how Paul urged them to be of the same mind in the Lord. Indeed, instead of judging them, Paul encouraged them.
How can leaders be of the same mind? By abiding in the Lord. We cannot see clearly, unless we look through God’s eyes.
Another confession, I have a tic. I often say to my children, Look! Look at the sunset! Look at that bird! Look at the (color) green! (Of spring grass, which makes my heart burst). Perhaps one day, they will look at something, remember the way I see it, and see the same for themselves. When we choose to look through God’s eyes, we too will see what is good, what is important, what love means. And that makes it easier to agree. And to keep on working. For His kingdom’s sake.
Prayer of Response:
Father, You see clearly, and You are love. Forgive us when we lose sight of your vision, help us forgive one another, and seek always to work together in unity and harmony, for your Kingdom’s sake. That we too may be called Fragrance, Fortunate, faithful, friend. Amen.
Questions to Ponder:
- Are you struggling to find agreement with a fellow laborer recently (and if it’s me, I do apologize!)?
- Is there something you can agree upon together, if you look together through God’s eyes?
- If it is troubling and difficult, is there someone who can help urge you both along a path of healing and forgiveness?
—Submitted by Kae Ting Trouilloud
Kae lives in Lyon, France, and is so so grateful that she does not work alone. She is constantly amazed at God’s vision, ever thankful for her long-suffering family (“Look at the green!”) and looks forward to the day when she can safely hug the amazing faithful team and community working towards the bilingual Lifesprings School of Ministry LSM-Formation Zoé, starting November 6, 2021.