Usually, “gambling” and “Christian” don’t fit together.

But don’t tell Paul. He knew what gambling meant. In Philippians 2:30, he describes his friend Epaphroditus as a “gambler.”

for he nearly died for the work of Christ, risking his life to complete what was lacking in your service to me.” (Philippians 2:30)

The word risk means “to throw dice.” Where Paul learned it, who knows, but it is a good word for Christians, especially right now.

A plague decimated thousands of the North African city of Carthage in 252 A.D. Dead bodies were discarded in the streets, and survivors fled in terror.

That’s when The Gamblers came together. These men and women, all Christians, took it upon themselves to bury the dead and nurse the sick. It took reckless courage.

No one suggests you do reckless acts in today’s struggle with COVID-19. But with the talk of staying in and protect yourself, it is easy to become emotionally distanced as well. People need a human and Christian heart to touch them. While it doesn’t have to be in person, a phone call or note that reaches to the hurting can mean a lot.

That’s what Epaphroditus did. He poured out his life for Paul. His example as a spiritual gambler needs to affect us closeted behind safe doors

-Robert G. Taylor-