And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment (Phil. 1:9)
The apostle Paul loved the Philippian church in a special way. They had been supportive of his ministry, even when he was imprisoned for preaching the gospel. So he wrote Philippians to give a report on his circumstances and to encourage the church to love one another with Christ's love. The verse above is a description that Paul gives of his prayer for the Philippians. Simply put, Paul prayed that God would enable them to love one another in increasing measure and that their love would be guided by knowledge and discernment.
I find it interesting that Paul would ask God to increase the exercise of love in wise ways among this church. What a great prayer request! If we knew the best ways to serve each other in love enabled by God's grace, we could truly glorify God and benefit each other. But what is it to love someone with knowledge and discernment? What is the best way to serve each other in love?
Our answer must be based on what is truly best for others. And what is truly best for others is that they know Jesus Christ and become filled with His joy. What else could be better? In fact, later in Philippians 1:25, the apostle Paul spoke of God's loving purpose in sparing his life for the benefit of the Philippians, "I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith." The ultimate expression of love is to do whatever you can to see another person make progress and take joy in trusting Jesus Christ. The most knowledgeable and discerning way to love others is tho help them be happy in Jesus Christ. And there is no other way, to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.
Are you praying for others to trust and obey Jesus, making progress and taking joy in the faith? Do you love others so much that you do what you can to see them be happy in Jesus by trusting and obeying Him? Remember this Valentine's Day that the wisest way to show love is to do just that!
I Love You,