Tim’s Daily Bread Devotional 5.29.21

By May 29, 2021Daily Bread

Thank you for sharing this early moment of your day with me, with God, and with the thoughts and words of this reading that I hope you will carry with you throughout the coming day and night.

Today’s Scripture:

Philippians 4:10-19
Acknowledgment of the Philippians’ Gift

10 I rejoice[a] in the Lord greatly that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned for me, but had no opportunity to show it.[b] 11 Not that I am referring to being in need; for I have learned to be content with whatever I have. 12 I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me. 14 In any case, it was kind of you to share my distress.

15 You Philippians indeed know that in the early days of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you alone. 16 For even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me help for my needs more than once. 17 Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the profit that accumulates to your account. 18 I have been paid in full and have more than enough; I am fully satisfied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God. 19 And my God will fully satisfy every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

Tim’s Devotional Reflection for Today

The Philippian Church was a joyful church.  Of all the churches Paul founded, it seemed to give him the least trouble and the most satisfaction. So, his letter to the Philippians is a letter of joy, brimming over with expressions of gratitude and affection and love.

At the beginning of his letter, Paul says, “I thank my God every time I mention you in my prayers.  I’m thankful for all of you every time I pray, and it’s always a prayer full of joy.  I’m glad because of the way you have been my partners in the ministry of the gospel from the time you first believed it until now.”

Paul, who had a very difficult life, found the elusive quantity called “enough” and the elusive quality called “contentment.”  He wrote, “I have learned to be content with whatever I have.  I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need.”

And then, Paul proclaimed, “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”  Where does your strength come from?  Have you discovered the elusive quantity called “enough” and the elusive quality called “contentment”?

How Much Is Enough?  How does one achieve contentment?  Vicki Robin wrote about sitting at dinner with a man at a conference on alternative economics. He told a story about his own struggle to discover just how much was enough for him.

From time to time, he goes to a rural monastery for a silent retreat. Meals are provided by the monks. The many acres of wooded land are laced with walking trails. There are several small sanctuaries with just a chair or two. Each room has a bed, a desk, a chair, a lamp and no more. The atmosphere is one of silence and peace. On one retreat he asked himself, “If I knew that everyone in the world would have enough if I had only this much, would this be enough for me?” The answer was a clear “Yes.”

While everyone sitting at the table at that dinner could identify with the simplicity of that vision, they went on to discuss what things they might add to support not only their spiritual nature but their work and sense of community as well.

A telephone. Certain books. Certain files. Another chair for a guest. A computer, perhaps. The more they added—she recounted later—the more difficult it was to draw the line. Where did necessity end and excess begin?  Vicki Robin, “How Much Is Enough,”

How much is enough?  More than a century ago John D. Rockefeller’s famous answer to that question spoke for many of us:  “Just a little bit more.”  It is that answer to the question that robs us of contentment.

Enough.  While it is a word we use repeatedly, do we recognize “enough” when we see it?

When have we worked enough?

When have we earned enough?

When have we bought enough?

When have we spent time enough?

When have we accumulated enough?

When are we prepared enough?

Enough is a tough thing to measure, and that difficulty is compounded by advertising, which promises us that the next thing will finally be enough.

How much is enough?

I am more and more convinced that the concept of enough is critically important for our world and its future.  In our global village, our understanding of enough relates directly to whether others actually have enough.  In our global village, our understanding of enough relates directly to the average temperature trends in our world.  In our global village, our understanding of enough relates directly to the world we leave for our children and grandchildren.

I should have learned about the elusive quality of enough when I was six or seven years old.  There was a beautiful rainbow one summer afternoon out behind my grandmother’s house.  She told me that there is a pot of gold at the end of every rainbow.  I’m sure she got a kick out of watching me from her back porch set out across the pasture to find that pot of gold.  I remember learning that day that rainbows are elusive.  As I walked, the end of the rainbow moved away from me as fast as I tried to move toward it.  I walked faster and the rainbow moved away faster.  I learned that day that chasing pots of gold at the end of rainbows is not at all fulfilling.  And, as if to drive home the point, as my focus was on that gold, I stepped in a cow patty.

There is a lot of theology woven into hymns. To enhance today’s reading, I recommend listening to “Seek Ye First”. I hope you will take a few moments to let the words of this message and the emotion that always connects us to music connect with your soul.

Seek ye first the Kingdom of God
And His righteousness
And all these things shall be added unto you
Allelu Alleluia

Ask and it shall be given unto you
Seek and ye shall find
Knock and it shall be opened unto you
Allelu Alleluia

Al – le – lu – ia
Al – le – lu – ia
Al – le – lu – ia
Al – le – lu Al – le – lu – ia

Al – le – lu – ia
Al – le – lu – ia
Al – le – lu – ia
Al – le – lu Al – le – lu – ia

I am so grateful for you, for our church, and for the Love that will see us all through this very difficult time. Please stay safe and well and we’ll be together again in spirit tomorrow morning!

Grace and Peace,


Dr. Tim Bruster
Senior Pastor

Here’s more about this passage of scripture via Upper Room devotionals:

RAVENS AND ANGELS

I will help another person today as God has helped me.

read more

SUBSCRIBE TO NEWS

Subscribe to E-News

Subscribe to Newsletter Footer