Pella Chronicle

December 4, 2013

What do you need?

By Rick Cowman
The Chronicle

Pella —

As Christmas draws near, advertisers push us into thinking about shopping and getting good deals for things we think we need.  But, what is it we really need?  I’m certain all of us could come up with a list of things, couldn’t we?  In Philippians chapter 4, verse 19, we read these encouraging words:  “And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus (NASB)!”  Let’s take a few moments and dissect this verse to see what our Lord is saying to us this week.
First the words, “...GOD shall supply…”  The One who spoke the universe into existence, who created man from the dust of the ground, the One who is in control of everything, and it is HE who is the source of supply for our needs!  This is the One who asked Abraham, “Is anything too difficult for the Lord?”
Then the words, “...MY God shall supply…”   Paul speaks, not just from a theological basis, but from the basis of experience.  He knew from personal life experience that God is faithful!  There’s an interesting phrase in verse 11 of this same chapter:  “I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I find myself.“  This contentment, or acceptance of the circumstances, was based on the knowledge that it was God who took care of him!  Have you experienced the God’s faithfulness and found contentment in His care?
Here this word:  “...God shall supply ALL your needs…”  How many needs will God oversee and take care of?  ALL of them!  In Ephesians 1, verse 3, and in 1 Peter 1, verse 3, we hear this with emphasis.  We have been “blessed with EVERY spiritual blessing in Christ” and “EVERYTHING pertaining to life and godliness” is ours in Christ.  Everything you and I need has been provided in Christ “according to His riches”;  therefore, according to His standard and the abundance of His supply!  You might say, “Well, I’m sure not seeing any of God’s blessings in my life!”  If that’s you (or me), perhaps you need to ask yourself some questions.  Are you certain you are “in Christ”?  This is the prerequisite for God’s promise of His blessings.  God blesses His children!  So, do you know this God who supplies?  And another probing question.  Are you violating any principles in God’s Word?  You see, God can do anything;  but He won’t bless disobedience!
Another word to consider:  “God will supply all your NEEDS…”  Notice the writer didn’t say, “all your WANTS”, or “all that we think we need”, but what God KNOWS we need!  It may be hard to receive this, but (speaking from experience) sometimes what we really “need” is to go through some testing and trials in our lives.  Why, you ask?  Because it is in those times of testing we find out who or what we are truly trusting, and who or what is our true source in our lives!  You see, God will not allow us to trust in anything (our job, abilities, etc.) as our source but Him, and He will allow whatever circumstances necessary to cause us to trust in Him.  And God knows how to get our attention!
God knows what we need!  We need to see the times of testing in our lives as opportunities to learn to trust Him, to see Him prove Himself faithful.  He will turn up the heat in areas we are not trusting Him, and He is perfectly willing to leave us there in the heat until we come to the place of trusting Him completely!  Hebrews tells us “God disciplines those He loves”, not for the purpose of punishment, but for the purpose of building a relationship of trust with us.  “My God will supply all of your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus!”  Let’s trust Him to do it!