"...continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling," - Philippians 2:12
My dear brothers and sisters, in this passage, the Apostle Paul exhorts the Philippians to work out their salvation that has been received. Not doing good to achieve that salvation but working out what has been received. To do it, one must express it in good deeds. The Apostle Paul himself in his life dedicated everything to the church he served, and was even willing to suffer. All this he did with joy, so the Philippians were called to work out their salvation with joy.
There are several things we need to pay attention to when we work out our salvation. First, there must be an attitude of fear and trembling. We can easily say various words and sentences, but it is very difficult for us to practice what we say. Saying and keeping commitments are two different things. So, we should not only talk about our commitment, but we also have to put that commitment into practice in our lives. The Apostle Paul was not afraid to test his commitment because after he committed, he also practiced it in his life.
Second, we often think that we need great talents or abilities to easily help us make our commitment a reality . This is simply not true. If we are willing to use all talents we have, even though we think they are only small talents, then we can work out our salvation well and correctly.
Third, do not associate obstacles with our commitments. If the conditions are good, then I can commit well, or vice versa. This is wrong. Because based on reality, it is exactly in difficult and unpleasant conditions that a person can give all his or her best and can carry out the commitments well. We must remember that commitment is a choice and cannot be influenced by a situation or condition.
Brothers and sisters, we should be grateful for God's promise that he is the one who will do all the work in us, according to his will. God's Spirit, who lives in our hearts will work to create a new desire, which is the desire to obey God. And more than that, he will work until that desire is manifested in our daily life. Let us express gratitude to the Lord Jesus who paid all the price of salvation for us. Amen.
Reflection on Philippians 2: 12 – 18 by Father Risco Batbual, SVD
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