Daily Reading: Philippians 2:12–16

You shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life. (Phil. 2:15–16)

Oscars, Emmys, Grammys—our culture seems to have a fascination with awards programs. We tune in faithfully to watch movie stars, directors, producers, singers, and musicians honored for their artistic achievements. And the shows are interesting, especially the responses made by the winners. Some are giddy with excitement, barely able to string words together. Others deliver long-winded speeches thanking everyone from their agents to the baristas at their favorite coffee bars. A few simply accept the award with humble confidence and voice two eloquent words: “Thank you.” At such moments, it is easy to distinguish the genuine stars from the neophytes and wannabes.

Like the artists at work in Hollywood and New York, you and I are working to develop our craft—in this case, living the life of Christ. Each day we have opportunities to succeed or fail. By God’s grace, you can grow, change, and become something more than you once were. As you grow in the faith, Paul said you will become a genuine star—one whose life radiantly displays the grace of God in a dark world.

Hold firmly to the Word of life. Never doubt that you are destined for glory. Keep the faith when others around you begin to waver. Pursue holiness above all things. And you, too, will one day cross the stage to receive the applause of heaven.

Close your eyes and envision the person you are becoming.

Lawrence W. Wilson is a pastor, author, blogger, and avid cyclist from Fishers, Indiana. He is the author of A Different Kind of Crazy (WPH).