1 Thessalonians 1:2-4 – We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers, remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father, knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God.
The Apostle Paul remembered the Thessalonians ‘work of faith’ their ‘labor of love’ and their ‘patience of hope’ in his prayers to God. Whenever Paul thought of the Christians that were in Thessalonica, his heart was filled with gratitude. Paul started the church there in less than ideal circumstances, being run out of town after only three weekends with them (Acts 17:1–10). However, this church was strong and full of life. He knew that this work was beyond him and his abilities and that it was the work of God. Paul gives thanks for this church because of many things, and one of the most important was because they were a great example. This was a model church. This was a church that was doing Christianity right. Their faith in God was put into action, their love of people was clearly evident and their hope in Christ’s return was what they trusted in. Please notice, that the past is the work of faith, the present is a labor of love and the future is the patience of hope. These three qualities make up a solid follower of Jesus Christ. This is the way you can withstand the many trials and difficulties life brings your way.
Would you say that you are a faithful person, a loving friend and a hopeful believer? Could these three qualities be in someone’s thankful prayer to God for you? Do you possess these characteristics in your walk with the Lord? Today is Labor Day, and you may have the day off from your work or from your usual routine, but these three qualities should never take a day off in your life. As a follower of Jesus Christ, you are to possess these attributes and exercise them at all times. Your challenge this week is to exercise your faith and trust God for whatever is lacking in your life. By displaying love for those individuals in your life that are more difficult to love. And finally, to be hopeful that God is at work behind the scenes putting in place a blessing tailored specifically for you. We are all thankful for a day set aside to rest from our labor and for time to celebrate with family and friends. But never forget to thank God for all those He has paced into your life and for the impact they have had upon you. May you have a very happy and safe Labor Day. God bless you.