1 If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, 2 make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. 5 Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, 7 but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, 8 he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death? even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
12 Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed me, not only in my presence, but much more now in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Be like Jesus. That’s what Jesus says here – be like Jesus. Not really anything more or less than that. This kind of attitude is not just internal or external, but both. we are to treat all people in this way – Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. How different would life be, if we started each day with this scripture as our meditation and prayer, seeking God’s guidance and power to enable us to live in this way, the WAY? What impact would it have on our congregations, on the way we program, on the way we discuss and do business? Does it move us more toward a concensus model and away from voting? What impact does it have when I believe that a particular programming direction is misguided, or is it even about that kind of thing? Probably the only way to find out is simply to receive the text daily as a meditation, and see what happens. I think I may also suggest that we use it to begin all our meetings for the next two months.