1 Thessalonians 3:6-10 (JDV)
1 Thessalonians 3:6 But now Timothy has come to us from you and brought us good news about your faith and care. He reported that you always have good memories of us and that you long to see us, as we also long to see you.
1 Thessalonians 3:7 Therefore, brothers and sisters, in all our distress and suffering, we were encouraged about you through your faith
1 Thessalonians 3:8 because we are alive now, if you stand firm in the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 3:9 How can we thank God for you in return for all the joy we experience before our God because of you,
1 Thessalonians 3:10 as we pray very intensely night and day to see you face to face and to complete what is lacking in your faith?
I was tempted to translate the words “because we are alive now” in verse 8 as simply “whew!” because that is what Paul is implying. His concern for the Thessalonians had practically stopped his heart. Now that he has good news about how the congregations are doing there, he and the others on his team can be alive again.
When you invest yourself in the spiritual lives of a people, there is no feeling like the relief of knowing that they are growing strong in the Lord, even in your absence. There is no gladness like that of seeing evidence of godly lives and successful ministries in those you have discipled.
Lord, we pray today for those believers that we have left behind, and ask you to ensure their continued growth and health.