For to me, living is Christ and dying is gain.
For Paul the choice between living and dying is equally weighted. To live means achieving more for Christ. To die means to be with Christ.
He encourages the Philippians to live their lives in a manner worthy of the gospel. They are to be united in mind and spirit, contending for the faith.
God has granted them the privilege of believing and also suffering for Christ.
The high point of faith is to have the attitude of Paul that whether we are in this life or the next, Christ is all in all.
Too many christians can only see what is happening in this life and so become discouraged or confused when things don’t work out the way they expect.
For Paul this is all in God’s hands. He desires to be with Christ, but in the meantime he will do all he can to serve Christ.
It is this attitude of Christ at the centre of all we do that makes for a person of faith and maturity.
Lord Jesus. It is so easy to take my eyes off you and become distracted by the world. Please help me to put you at the centre of all things. Amen.