Lord, may I hear You now and throughout my day. Give me Your love and concern for Your people everywhere.
Read 1 Thessalonians 3:6-13
 But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you.  Therefore, brothers and sisters, in all our distress and persecution we were encouraged about you because of your faith.  For now we really live, since you are standing firm in the Lord.  How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you?  Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.  Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you.  May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.  May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat does Paul pray for the Thessalonian Christians?
This part of the letter reads as though Paul has been interrupted by a knock on the door. The Thessalonians have been on Paul’s mind, and suddenly, Timothy shows up with news from the Thessalonian believers (6)! Do you ever get those moments, those God-interruptions? Look what effect Timothy’s news had on Paul. The anxiety of v. 5 melts into relief and joy (6,7) that overflows into thanksgiving (9) and renewed, focused prayer (11-13). Paul’s experience here reminds me that the people we meet, the emails that come in, the phone calls or texts we receive are not by chance. Could the interruptions in our day become moments of God’s grace? Take another look at Paul’s prayer for these Christians (11-13). Are we as focused as Paul is in meeting with fellow believers (10)? When I was living in China, I was struck by the effort Chinese Christians made and the dangers they were prepared to face to meet with other Christians. Even if circumstances prevent us from getting together with other believers, we can still follow Paul’s example and pray for them, and for their growth in faith and faithfulness.
Pray for believers the Holy Spirit brings to mind. Try to find a way to encourage them, and to meet.
Loving Lord God, You are an ever-present encouragement to me as I meet You in Your Word and prayer.
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