A Half-Empty Glass – Philippians 4:11-13

glass half empty“I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:11-13, NKJV).

Is the glass half empty or half full?  This expression is commonly used as a litmus test to determine an individual’s worldview. Half full expresses optimism and half empty expresses pessimism.

The Apostle Paul seems like a “glass-half-full” type of guy. Unfortunately, I often fall into the “half-empty-glass” camp…

Sure, I try to look at problems as challenges, troubles as opportunities. But hard as I try, problems are just problems, trouble is just trouble. Although I don’t consider myself a pessimist, I try to avoid problems and trouble, not embrace them!

Since I am a “glass-half-empty” type of person, a “glass-half-empty” version of this verse would be more meaningful to me. Instead of “I can do all things through Christ,” for me it’s more like “I can’t do anything without Christ.”

I’m sure I don’t experience all the power and victory that is available to me in Christ, but I do recognize that He resolves my helplessness and depravity. While I don’t always live abundantly in Christ, I know I can’t succeed in anything without Him!

The Apostle Paul was one of those guys that looked down from the top of the glass and declared, “By the power Christ gives me I can fill this glass up! I’m one of those guys that looks up from the bottom of the glass and cries out, “Lord, don’t add any more to my cup!”

When I become discontent with life because of problems and trouble, I content myself in knowing that I have a Savior who fills my half-empty glass by His presence in my life, His indwelling Spirit. He’s Christ in me!

Don’t you know that you are God’s temple and God’s Spirit lives in you? (1 Corinthians 3: 16, CEB)




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