“If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
These words were not written from the comfort of an exotic resort overlooking the Mediterranean or some institute of higher education. No, they were penned by a broken man in the dark solitary confinement of a prison. A man persecuted for his faith but full of pure love for his persecutors and the people he mentored on his missionary journeys.