‘I think it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus… in order that you may rejoice at seeing him again, and that I may be less anxious. Welcome him then in the Lord with all joy, and honour such people, because he came close to death for the work of Christ, risking his life’. (Philippians 2.25-28)
St Paul writes that he hopes to “be less anxious” about the situation in Philippi. He is sending the friend who has been seriously ill, “close to death for the work of Christ, risking his life”. We have become very aware in the pandemic just how many people are risking their lives out of concern for others (the work of Christ). Later in this letter Paul writes “Rejoice always... do not worry about anything… By prayer and thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God which passes all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”. We, like Paul, can be anxious for those we care about and at the same time be at peace.