The Thessalonians had been going through times of tribulation and afflictions and Paul has sent Timothy with assurances of encouragement and to let them know that such problems were normal for the Christian church. Paul also has a real concern knowing that it is times like these that Satan will move in and tempt the people to abandon their faith and be susceptible to compromise. When Timothy returns he brings good news of their faith and love. They do remember him and long to see him and his fellow workers again. Paul also has problems and this good news comforts him greatly. Within Paul there is a joy in knowing his converts are standing and glorifying Christ. There is joy and rejoicing, he is grateful too God for these Thessalonians. He prays constantly that God will direct his way to them, he desires to see them and help in strengthening their faith in Christ. Paul prays that their love for one another grows and they will establish a need for Holy living. Christ is coming again and with his Saints.
At 77 years of age I have a tendency to look back and fondly remember the years past. For most of my generation those were the best years. The simple life of the fifties, the excitement of a new generation stepping up and the challenges of new ideas and though we did not see it then the acceptance of dissent as a mark of social and cultural growth, which has unfortunately taken the place of reasonable debate as to the value of the path to be followed. We have, my generation, seen the marginalization of Christian values and the removal of God from our schools and other public forums. Interestingly enough I have seen one constant in all this cycle of change….The Pastor And The Flock… Thessalonians 3:1-10 gives us some insight into a Pastors heart.
This world we live in is full of evil, evil brought about by evil people. Here is the hard part. We will never be able to talk with or mingle with people unless we like them. If our contact with others is one of conformation there will be no chance to minister to these people. If we began each day despising people or just disliking them, we will never have the chance to save them. A Pastor has a real God given ability to like all people…Pastors have a genuine affection for that which God has created. There is a pastoral anxiety, the anxious wait to see how a member of the flock turns out. The hours of prayer and time invested in the sharing of the word and teaching of the precepts of the church. The joy of a soul saved and looking to their faith to carry them through the evils of this world. Even Christ watches and follows, it is humbling for us to realize that there are those who watch out for us, pray for us and are anxious for our well being here on earth and in heaven. We must learn not to be so quick to criticize and condemn others for their actions. Our first priority should be to help save them from their faults and mistakes. Paul sent Timothy to Thessalonica not too just inspect the church but to give them the help they needed. A Pastor knows that the first duty of any Christian is to help. Ours is a faith of hope, love and never condemnation.
A Pastor is a person of joy. Paul has been told that the church is doing well and Paul finds joy in their ability to stand firm. We should understand this easily. There is the joy of a parent or even a mentor in the success of those we taught and encouraged, knowing they will stand the test of time. Prayer and a Pastor are one in all things. A Pastor at the foot of the cross pleading for the needs of his flock is a divine blessing. We will never know in this life how much temptation, sin, pain and hurt has been done away with or minimized by the prayers of Pastors and people of the faith. In our world today the curse of this virus is keeping many of us from fellowship but even then we can still pray.
Affection, anxiety, help, joy and prayer are the heart of a Pastor. We know that there are certain gifts given by the Spirit and each one of us are different in that respect. Consider this if you will. We all can’t be Pastors but how much better would this world be if we had The Heart of A Pastor.
Pray for our Nation and the community of faith the world over…
Life is Good
This is a very wise writing. It brings us to remember the evil in our world, and it also reminds us to pray constantly for the church, those around us and for ourselves that none lose sight of Him who is righteous and saves! Thank you, Kurt for this booster lesson!
John Kurt Carpenter said:
Thank you for the comment Pat. I had Robert in mind as I read and researched this blog. I hope you are doing well and things there are well with the church. I am doing a bible study on Zoom, Beatitudes, for First Nazarene in Cleveland Tn, a condensed format to be sure. We have completed John 1, 2 and 3 so far.
Stay Safe, Stay Healthy and remain strong in the Faith.