Love Increases, 1 Thessalonians 3
As a Pastor I can surely relate to Paul in this chapter when he writes about missing the Thessalonians people! I miss my congregation and surely know what it means to pray for each and every one as we maneuver our way through all that is happening in our world today--especially the COVID-19 situation. Yet, even in the missing, it has been so wonderful to hear (just as Paul heard from Timothy I have heard from the Deacons) that you all are doing well and standing firm in your faith. Verse 8-9 read, "For now we really live, since you are standing firm in the Lord. How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you?"
My prayers are with each and every one to continue to stand firm in the Lord. Standing firm also correlates with what is written in verses 12-13, the heart's desire of a Pastor--that the Lord would cause your love to increase and overflow to one another AND FOR EVERYONE ELSE--just as ours (mine) does for you!" Love is the key and it is so important that this love that comes from the heart of God to ours and then flows out of us would increase and be evident in every way.
As this was Paul's prayer, so this is mine also: "May He strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones."
Even so come Lord Jesus!