Read Lead Pastor Duane Mabee's weekly Pastor's Ponderings here!
I Thank God for Youby Duane Mabee on November 22, 2022
I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. And I am sure of this, that He Who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. (Phil 1:3-6 ESV)
Paul’s prayer of thanksgiving for the Philippians is interesting. He doesn’t thank God for the good things the Philippians had done for him, though they had been very good to him. He thanks God for the Philippians’ extended partnership with him in spreading the gospel. They had worked with him to make Christ’s Name and salvation known among the Gentiles.
We have much to be thankful for, and I hope you are. I hope your gratitude to God extends far beyond the official Thanksgiving holiday. But I wonder, are there people in your life that you praise God for not because of how good they have been to you, how much they have taken care of you, or how much they have given you, but because of how they have worked with you to advance Christ’s kingdom in your life and the lives of those around you?
We should be grateful for physical things people have done for us and material ways they have blessed us. But are there also people in your life that you are thankful for just because they helped you mature in your faith? Are there people you praise God for because they helped you share the gospel with people who are important to you? Many of the things we are thankful for are temporary, but these are of eternal value.
I am grateful for the people who shared Christ with me. I’m grateful for those who helped me grow up in my relationship with Christ, and those who helped me understand Christ better. I am thankful for those who came along side me and helped me accomplish kingdom advancing things. Are there people like that, that you praise God for?
Are you a person like that for other people? Are there people who are grateful to God for you because you have partnered with them to advance Christ’s kingdom in their life and the lives of those they love? If so, thank God for how He has used you in the lives of others. I also encourage you ask God how He might use you to impact others for Christ and help them advance His kingdom.