Have you ever bought a used car? One thing you have to beware of is a car that has been in collisions and has a lot of “Bondo” on it. Bondo is a resin product that is used in the place of proper body work or to cover up some kind of problem with the body of the car. Sometimes I wonder if we have some “Bondo believers” out there. By that, I mean people who appear to be one thing but really are another.
The apostle Paul wrote what his prayer was for the believers living in Philippi. “And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ” (Philippians 1:9-10).
A definition of the word sincere that Paul uses would be “without wax.” The origin of this goes back to ancient Rome, when they would make fine pottery, which was relatively thin, and fragile cracks would develop after firing. So, rather than remake the piece, unscrupulous shops would fill the cracks with hard, dark wax (first-century Bondo). This would be revealed when the object purchased was placed in bright sunlight, as the wax would melt.
So Paul uses this phrase “without wax” to speak of being a genuine, not a fake believer. As we wait for Christ’s return, let’s pray that we are not “Bondo believers,” but rather genuine followers.
Out of their long and painful journey has come a really helpful survival guide, so to speak. It’s a book called Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. It’s not just an inspiring story of triumph through trials but a how-to book for accepting God’s plan and recognizing His providence even when it feels like your world is shattered.