“Work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.”

Philippians 2:12b-13

“The things that helped you survive in your childhood can kill you in adulthood,” a counselor once told me. We all had ways to deal with hard realities of life. Perhaps you redirected your anger, or emotionally disengaged, or lived in constant fear and paranoia. A child with little control over his surroundings figures out how to deal with the pain.

Often when these coping mechanisms continue into adulthood, problems arise. We may face stressful circumstances now and resort to the same means we employed as kids. While emotionally disengaging might save a child, it can be detrimental to a marriage. Coping mechanisms are often rooted in lies we tell ourselves: “God did not and cannot keep me safe, so when things get hard, I’ll just mentally check out.”

The Lord will work through our pasts, using them to help us grow rather than get by, to thrive rather than just survive. He saves us, not only from our sin, but also from the idolatry of deeply-ingrained coping mechanisms. He is at work in us by His Spirit to glorify Himself.

Scripture Focus

Philippians 2:12-18


Remember, you don’t need the same old survival strategy. You need your Savior!

Bible In A Year

  • Esther 3-4
  • Psalm 39
  • Luke 2