12/13/2012

(Philippians 3:1 NIV) “I thank my God every time I remember you.”

Paul wrote the above words while he was in prison in Rome for preaching the Gospel message about Jesus.  While he was in prison he no doubt had a lot of time to think.  And as he sat in prison his thoughts many times went to his congregation in the city of Philippi.  Every time Paul thought about the Christians in Philippi it caused him to thank God for them.

Isn’t that amazing?  Every time he thought of them he thanked God for them.  No doubt the congregation in Philippi wasn’t perfect.  They had their problems that Paul as their pastor had to deal with.  Yet, every time Paul remembered them he thanked God for them.  How could he do this?  Because they were living in the grace of Jesus Christ just like Paul was.  They were Paul’s brothers and sisters in Christ.  Paul thanked God for them every time he thought of them even though at times they probably had differences, even though he probably had personality conflicts with some of the members, etc.  Yet, Paul still thanked God for them because they had one Savior who united them.

And the same is true for you. You can thank God every time you remember your fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.  No matter if you have had a disagreement, no matter if there is a personality conflict, no matter if at one point nice words weren’t said, no matter what sin was committed, you can thank God every time you think of each other because of the forgiveness that Jesus has won for you both.  Jesus has made you brothers and sisters.  Jesus has united you in faith!  You both have a common goal – to be in heaven.

And so when you think of your brothers and sisters in Christ thank God for them.  Put aside your differences, forget about the sins that have been committed in the past.  God has given them to you to keep your faith strong, to keep you close to your Savior, to help you when times are hard, and to encourage you until Jesus takes you to be with him.  Thank God for each other!

Thanking God for all of you,

Pastor Schumann

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