Now we really live, since you are standing firm in the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 3:8
Our church’s prayer room expresses in a powerful way the fellowship of believers through the written comments people leave behind as they meditate and pray. Their descriptions of their time with God display in a real way their impressions of God in action. Whether written in the prayer journal on the table, posted as a note on the wall, or scrawled across the room’s whiteboard, each expression of intercession, praise, or answered prayer is a testimony that God has been at work in each writer’s life!
I think that all who read those expressions are affected in a way like Paul was when he heard Timothy’s report. After ministering in Thessalonica Paul, Timothy, and their fellow missionaries had been chased out of the city by angry opponents of the gospel (see Acts 17). In the days and weeks afterward Paul fretted over the new Christians back in Thessalonica, hoping they were weathering the storms of persecution. After sending Timothy back and then hearing Timothy’s report of the spiritual vitality and growth in the Christians there, Paul knew: in spite of obstacles to the gospel, God was at work in Thessalonica! (See 1 Thessalonians 2:17-3:5.)
Paul’s profound joy (“Now we really live”) is the kind of joy found only in the body of Christ: joy upon seeing our loving God at work in others, bringing them to himself.
Lord, fill us with true joy by building up your church and allowing us to see something of what you are doing. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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