It wasn't until later, as we were discussing our current sermon series through Philippians with the Life Group that meets in our home, that it hit me.
Even after all this time soaking myself in Philippians, somehow I still made the application to pray this as a prayer for an individual - which isn't necessarily wrong, but it's not authentic to the context.
In context, Paul is praying this prayer for a group of believers.
This hit me as I sat with a group of believers from our own local body, listening, during a week when I had been working through a fairly weighty matter with others.
So without working through at length again, let's make this application: let's pray Paul's prayer in Philippians 1:9-11 for our local community of believers. A Southern "y'all" might help us here:
"And this I pray, that all y'all's love would overflow more and more, in knowledge and depth of insight, so that all y'all - together - might discern what really matters and choose the more excellent way, that y'all would live in a pure and sincere way until Christ returns, filled with the fruit of each of y'all's salvation - the righteousness that Jesus Himself is producing in all y'all's lives - and all this for the glory and praise of God."
We need each other. We need insight and counsel. We need perspective and help. We need group hugs and prayers meetings and round table discussions. We need coffee conversations on Sunday afternoons. We need shared podcasts and song albums. We need to talk, to listen, to work through the how's and what's and why's together.
In this together,
For his glory,