“... for you had become so very dear to us. 1 Thessalonians 2: 8 AMP
During the 1990’s, a singles class at our church became a close-knit family for many people who had lost a spouse through divorce or death. I have experienced this for myself through the passing on to eternal life of my husband last year.
When someone needed to move, class members or members of the church packed boxes, carried furniture, and provided food. Birthdays and holidays were no longer solitary events as faith and friendship emerged into an ongoing relationship of encouragement. Many of those bonds forged during adversity a couple of decades ago continue to flourish and sustain individuals and families today.
Paul’s letter to the followers of Jesus in Thessalonica paints a picture of life-giving relationships in God’s family. “But we behaved gently when we were among you, like a devoted mother nursing and cherishing her own children.” 1 Thess.2:7 AMP.
“For you recall our hard toil and struggle [and plied our trade] in 0rder not to be a burden to any of you…” 1 Thess. 2:9. “For you know as a father [dealing with] his children, we used to exhort each of you personally, stimulating and encouraging and charging you”. 1 Thess. 2:11
Like mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, Paul and his associates shared the gospel and their lives with these fellow believers who “had become dear” to them. Vs.8.
In God’s family of faith, He provides mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers for us. The Lord gives His joy as we share our lives together in His grace and love. Our Abba Father has called us to serve one another - to give us a heart willing to accept the care of others. May we ask for help when we are in need and respond with a heart of grace to others when they ask for help.
God loves you and me; let’s love one another.