Where Discernment Begins

“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is bestand may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9-11

In his letter to the Philippians, Paul tells them that he prays for their discernment, that they would be able to discern “what is best.” That’s the challenge, isn’t it? Discerning “what is best” sounds like an overwhelming task: so many factors, so much complexity in our lives and the lives of those around us, not to mention the difficulties inherent in the interaction of our home and host cultures.

I’m sure that together we could come up with a huge list of areas in our lives in which we feel a desperate need for discernment. At the moment, my use of technology, parenting, and ministry and service responsibilities top my own list. What do I do, what do I say, how do I respond? These questions confront me each morning as I consider the day ahead, and I often only have one prayer: “Lord, give me wisdom.”

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