TCTC Family,

This year’s theme is based in the book of Philippians. It is a letter from the apostle Paul to the church in Philippi. In it, he urges them to live like Jesus did. Paul summarizes what he means by this in the following poem:

“Who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Philippians 2:6-11 ESV

Jesus, the Lord over everything that was, is, and ever will be, chose to become a human. That’s like a carpenter choosing to become a chair or a baker choosing to become a loaf of bread. The audacity of this is astounding. He chose to lose everything. But the story doesn’t end there. Jesus humbled himself, yes, but then he was exalted. Over the course of Philippians, Paul emphasizes the heavy correlation between humility and victory. The fact is, in the context of Christianity, in order to win, we must first lose.

Contrary to popular belief, our goal as Christians should not be to become better people. Our goal as Christians should be to become less like people and more like God. Every day, we should be chipping away more and more of what makes us human, and filling that void with the attributes of Christ. Nothing in our lives should be more important than what God says and wants. If we live in this way, our opinions and our desires will no longer become sources of conflict within The Kingdom of God. We will stand out in the culture as a people who do not contribute to the cacophony, but offer something different. Jesus is too massive to fit inside any category a human person could possibly conjure, so we must become him. We must lose so He can win.

When Jesus came to earth, it says he emptied himself. And before he comes back, we must return the favor. Then, and only then, will we begin to see what God can do through us.

“I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”
Philippians 3:12-14 NLT

My name is Noah Pryor and I am beyond thrilled to be serving as chairman for TCTC 2022: Lose. I look forward to seeing you all in January!

In Christ,
Noah Pryor