I am listening to BJ Putnam’s cd as I study for tonight’s bible study with my hubby. We are studying 1Thess. 3 (AMP) tonight. There is so much here in this chapter but these are just a few things I have gotten so far from reading it this morning I thought I would share with you.
The first thing that came to me was in the form of a question. “Are you a Timothy?”
Paul & Silas had warned the Thessalonians that they would have to endure troubles, difficulties, & suffering. Concerned about how they were handling it all they sent Timothy to go encourage & strengthen them in their faith. (Vrs 1-5)
God wants to use us to touch the lives of others. Sometimes that means being a Timothy. He was a strengthener, establisher, exhorter, comforter, and encourager to those in need. Many people are hurting, struggling, and going through things in their lives today and need someone like Timothy to come along and build them up. I don’t know about you but I am so incredibly grateful for the Timothy’s in my life that have been sent by God to encourage me during difficult or challenging times! Look for opportunities to be a blessing!
The second thing that stood out to me was about how Timothy was able to return with good news that everyone was remaining in faith and that really encouraged Paul & Silas so much that they praised & glorified God! (vrs 6-9) We don’t always know it but people are always watching to see how we handle situations we are going through. It’s a powerful thing when we rely on God and are able to remain strong & joyful during our trials & tribulations. It can be such a witness & a testimony to others. Most of all, it brings great glory to God.
My favorite part of this chapter is that it ends with verses (12 & 13) that the Holy Spirit gave to my husband when he sought God’s direction in marrying me during a fast. We consider them our love verses. They are the verses we stand on for our marriage. We believe our ministry as a couple is to live a life of extravagant love for God first, then for each other, and let that extravagant love overflow into the lives of others.
Paul’s prayer and declaration over the Thessalonians was that they would increase in their love for each other and that God would continue to strengthen, establish, exhort, comfort, and encourage them all.
That is my prayer for you today my friends. Don’t forget to look for an opportunity to be a Timothy in someone’s life today!
Have an amazingly blessed and incredible day!
1 Therefore, when [the suspense of separation and our yearning for some personal communication from you] became intolerable, we consented to being left behind alone at Athens.
2 And we sent Timothy, our brother and God’s servant in [spreading] the good news (the Gospel) of Christ, to strengthen and establish and to exhort and comfort and encourage you in your faith,
3 That no one [of you] should be disturbed and beguiled and led astray by these afflictions and difficulties [to which I have referred]. For you yourselves know that this is [unavoidable in our position, and must be recognized as] our appointed lot.
4 For even when we were with you, [you know] we warned you plainly beforehand that we were to be pressed with difficulties and made to suffer affliction, just as to your own knowledge it has [since] happened.
5 That is the reason that, when I could bear [the suspense] no longer, I sent that I might learn [how you were standing the strain, and the endurance of] your faith, [for I was fearful] lest somehow the tempter had tempted you and our toil [among you should prove to] be fruitless and to no purpose.
6 But now that Timothy has just come back to us from [his visit to] you and has brought us the good news of [the steadfastness of] your faith and [the warmth of your] love, and [reported] how kindly you cherish a constant and affectionate remembrance of us [and that you are] longing to see us as we [are to see] you,
7 Brethren, for this reason, in [spite of all] our stress and crushing difficulties we have been filled with comfort and cheer about you [because of] your faith ([a]the leaning of your whole personality on God in complete trust and confidence).
8 Because now we [really] live, if you stand [firm] in the Lord.
9 For what [adequate] thanksgiving can we render to God for you for all the gladness and delight which we enjoy for your sakes before our God?
10 [And we] continue to pray especially and with most intense earnestness night and day that we may see you face to face and mend and make good whatever may be imperfect and lacking in your faith.
11 Now may our God and Father Himself and our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) guide our steps to you.
12 And may the Lord make you to increase and excel and overflow in love for one another and for all people, just as we also do for you,
13 So that He may strengthen and confirm and establish your hearts faultlessly pure and unblamable in holiness in the sight of our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) with all His saints (the holy and glorified people of God)! Amen, (so be it)!