BEING MENTIONED IN PRAYER - PART 3
WEDNESDAY 13 JULY 2022
In our referenced Scripture below, those Thessalonian saints had so shown that their faith worked; they laboured in love and were patient in hope. On this grounded persuasion, Paul's prayer was designed to keep them steadfast in the faith and empower them to excel in the things of the Spirit. Notably, the very idea of Paul praying for them in accordance with their spiritual performances implies that they made excellent use of God's grace, and as a result, it was evidenced by Paul's prayer points on their behalf, which was richly rewarded by God.
Reference : 1 Thessalonians 1:2-3 New International Version (NIV) "We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ."
Again, Paul acknowledged that the actions of the saints in Thessalonian church in relation to their true faith, as well as their tireless toil of love, and endurance in hope, have put them consistently at the forefront of his thoughts, at his altar of prayer. And today, I'll shed some light on their endurance inspired by hope in the Lord. Endurance here, is an unfailing, unwavering and unending persistence, which is a sure fountain of our living comforts, and our lasting hope in Christ Jesus. If you observe other Biblical translations of our referenced verses, the word "endurance" is used interchangeably with perseverance, steadfastness, and patience of hope.
Remarkably, it is un-Pauline to leave the saints in the churches he superintended without praying for them always. So when you observe Paul talking about remembering the saints in terms of their perseverance inspired by hope, he sure knew by experience, what perseverance was. Paul persevered in praying about everything that would move the saints forward spiritually. Sometimes, he gave thanks for their conversion, redemption and faith in Christ; other times, he gave thanks that grace was given them by Jesus Christ. Through his enduring prayers, the saints were enriched by him with diverse spiritual gifts in order to strengthen and establish them in their Christian service (see Romans 1:11-12 NLT). So Paul didn't just speak of utterance and knowledge or explain Kingdom mysteries, he was actively involved in a prayer lifestyle that inspired the saints to experience all manner of spiritual blessing, growth and progress.
When we talk about endurance inspired by hope, sensibly and figuratively, apostle Paul must have received a PhD degree in it. At one time, while addressing the saints in Galatian church, he said, "Oh, my dear children! I feel as if I'm going through labor pains for you again, and they will continue until Christ is fully developed in your lives" (Galatians 4:19 NLT). Beloved, the patience of hope in Christ serves a noble purpose in our spiritual growth and structure. Through it, we can experience tremendous spiritual development, as well as conquer and prevail in anything. It is likened to wearing a mentality that reveals courage, determination and steadfastness and it is always impossible not to succeed, reach a goal, or win in life with it. In a nutshell, the evidence that you'll achieve success in anything you do, is your fidelity to endure and persist in doing that thing despite any challenge or difficulty. This denotes that the value of "endurance" can render any unfavourable situation powerless and grant anyone the ability to effectively overcome and succeed.
True Christians have a distinguished aura marked by endurance, which is inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. They dare not live without praying and interceding for others, thereby making too frequent and honourable mention of them before the Lord. Have you observed how often in the pages of the Scripture that our Lord Jesus Christ repeated His prayers for the chosen ones? For all who were called upon Christ and given to Him, Jesus prayed, desiring, in their behalf, the pardoning mercy, sanctifying grace, and comforting peace of God (please read and study John chapter 17). Specifically, in verses 20-21, Jesus prayed for all Christians who would believe in Him. Through His endurance of hope in prayer, He made the greatest request for us from the Father - for the best gift, who is the precious Holy Spirit. He said, "And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever" (John 14:16 ESV). And yes, we can learn endurance of hope from the Master. Shalom!
Scripture Reading - Romans 2:7; Philippians 4:13; Romans 5:3-5; 2 Timothy 1:3-5; Romans 8:24-25.
Guided Prayer: Dear Father in heaven, it is a great privilege and honour to regularly set aside time and thank you without interruption because through your Word, I'm formidably well informed regarding the endurance of true and lasting hope. I'm made so by your rich and free grace, effectively working in my life. How glorious are the victories and successes attained through my perseverance, which is energized by hope in Christ. Hence, I'm forever grateful for my permanent subscription to your worthy inspirations in the pages of the Scripture, in Jesus' Name, Amen!