1 Thessalonians 3:7-9 - Family
1 Thessalonians 3:7-9 "So, in all our trouble and suffering we have been encouraged about you, brothers. It was your faith that encouraged us, because now we really live if you stand firm in your life in union with the Lord. Now we can give thanks to our God for you. We thank him for the joy we have in his presence because of you." (TEV)
I've written before in these devotionals on the importance of family..........how our lives are connected to our brothers, sisters, parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts......and so on. Our identification with our families defines us as human beings........shapes us as we grow from childhood into adulthood..........instills in us values that we carry throughout our lives then pass to our children, and they pass these values to theirs.
And as I grow older I feel the call of family more compelling...........I want to learn more about my brothers and sisters......my parents.......and other members of my family. I want to share with those in the family those times of triumph, and I want to be with them to share those times of need.
There's a transformation going on within me...........that pushes me to strengthen connections to my family.......and as this is going on, my love for them grows too.............with a depth and vibrancy that it never had before.
So when I read tonight's scripture I felt strongly what Paul must have felt when he sat down to write this letter to the Family in Thessalonica...........how Paul drew strength (in the midst of all the "trouble and suffering" he was enduring) from the news of the Thessalonian Family's triumph in faith and the firmness of their union with the Lord.
And I somehow feel the words Paul wrote back then touching me now as I write these words. And I give thanks to the Lord, as he did, for the work and hardships endured by him and all the other members of the Family back then so that I can learn about the joys of knowing the Lord.............through reading His Word.
I thank God for all of them..........I thank God for the joy of reading of the way King David worshipped the Lord with every fiber of his being.........I thank God for the richness of the words of the prophet Isaiah..................the instructions of Moses............the chronicles of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John of the Lord's life with us.
I thank the Lord for all of them who contribute to my better understanding of Him and the Family.............and I reach back in time with my thoughts and my prayers tonight to tell them of my love for them.
And I feel in my heart that the Lord has passed them the message.
Love in Jesus,
"But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired." (1 Corinthians 12:18 NASB)
"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission."
This devotional was originally posted on CCI-Devo - Daily Group Devotionals on December 18, 2003 in post #432. It was written by Jim Ross, a former United Pentecostal Church member, who attends Christian Challenge International, the sponsor of the devotional group. The devotional is the copyright of Jim Ross and is reprinted on this site by permission.
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August 23, 1997
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