I feel like there are a plethora of oxymorons in our everyday language. I know that I use them frequently. One of my favorites is the phrase “clear as mud.” Paul is writing to the church at Philippi while he is sitting in jail in Rome. One would think that he would be depressed, sad, or even angry being in jail, but Paul is filled with joy thinking of his brothers and sisters in Christ who are in Philippi. Our lives as Christians are to be a constant oxymoron compared to the current culture that we live in. We are called by Christ to not seek our glory but to seek his glory. Paul totally contradicted the normal view of life in verse 21.
For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.Philippians 1:21
Paul’s words might sound like a contradiction to the culture around us, but in the church, they show us the manner of life worthy of the gospel of Christ. We tend to think of death as something to fear–as loss, not gain. He is reminding those of us who are in Christ that when we die, we are not losing this world but gaining our place in eternity with him. Also, while we are still alive in this world, we are to be seeking Christ’s glory and not our own. Paul was so focused on Christ that he struggled to choose between being present on earth working for Christ and being in Christ’s presence in eternity. What about you? Are your thoughts about your life and death consumed by fear or consumed by Christ?