Brothers and sisters, join in imitating me, and observe those who live according to the example you have in us. Philippians 3:17 NRSV
Retreat to your quiet place and prepare your heart and mind to allow Scripture to speak to you as you continue on your journey to joy today.
Start with Scripture. Today, read Philippians 3:17–19 from your favorite translation of the Bible or from the epigraph printed at the top of the chapter, page 139. Paul’s admonition—“copy me”—might sound egotistical, but in his letter to the Corinthians, he explained, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.” (1 Cor 11:1)
Paul also defines the enemies of Christ: “Their minds are set on earthly things.”
Where is your mind set—on heavenly or earthly things? Is life such a stark choice? How do you balance earthly responsibility while imitating Christ and focusing on the spiritual? How does Scripture speak to you? What is the key idea you need to hear today?
Read Chapter 20 of Reclaiming Joy. What parts of Ella’s story, if any, do you identify with?
Ella describes the kinds of widows she did not want to imitate, and on page 142 she describes those like her mother who lived with chronic depression. Do you find the advice she received from her pastor and the explanation of complicated grief helpful?
If you are single, do you enjoy your freedom and independence, which Ella describes on pages 143–145? What are the risks and responsibilities? Do you find that it requires self-discipline to be responsible for yourself? What are your fears?
If you are half a couple, do you consider yourself equipped to manage your affairs alone?
What kind of person do you want and need to be? Whom can you imitate? Do you have role models?
What is the lesson that you have learned today?
What can you do now to move toward joy? What, if anything, do you need to change?
What three things are you thankful for today? What moments of joy have you experienced in the last 24 hours? Take time to say, Thank you, God, for…
For an introduction to these 28 meditations leading to Easter, please read The Journey to Easter Joy: Daily Meditations, Letting Scripture Speak.
© Ella Wall Prichard, 2019