Summary: Paul had experiences of being in need and of having plenty. He convinced himself of his future ability to “do all things” based on the track record of a faithful God.
In Philippians 4:12-13 we read “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”
Paul can proclaim future “do-ability” through previous experience. Paul had previous experiences of being in need and previous experiences of having plenty. Therefore, Paul convinced himself of his future ability to “do all things,” based out of the previous track record of a faithful God.
There is a learning that must be experienced before confidently stating that you “can do all future things” through Christ who gives you strength. One must experience the secret of contentment when things looked bleak. One must master the secret of contentment when blessings abounded. Paul had spiritual muscle-memory that allowed him to confidently face unknown future.
God provided mission-success when I had an abundance of well-qualified volunteers and when I felt woefully understaffed. Therefore, the future seems brighter, because of my rearview mirror. Look back today.