“Your Faith is Showing”

We give thanks to God always for all of you,.. remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction… You received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit, so that you became an example to all the believers… For not only has the word of the Lord sounded forth from you in Macedonia and Achaia, but your faith in God has gone forth everywhere… For they themselves report… how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.” 1 Thessalonians 1:2-9

This letter to new believers in Thessalonica must have been a great encouragement. It is one thing to believe, to have your mind and perspective and life-direction change, and another for people to recognize and affirm the changes as becoming on you. Paul expresses his gratitude to God for this young church’s labor and commitment that were marked by faith, love, steadfast hope, and joy. The secret fuel was their receiving of God’s powerful word as truth, and allowing it to work in and through them. In doing so, their transformation from idol-worshipers to God-worshipers in a living and active faith blazed forth as an irresistible beacon in the whole region. (1 Thessalonians 2:13)

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Does my faith so show and shine? Emulating scriptures’ examples, how eagerly do I offer my best, toil in reverent fear of God even if I do not understand His ways, move out and on in trust He will guide and provide? How readily do I take God at His word, and speak it, believing it is living and active, over others in blessing? Where do I choose to identify with God over enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin, and serve steadfastly, knowing my labor is not in vain? How willingly do I take risks when God calls, trusting Him with every need, fear, unknown, and result? Are my days and actions marked with courageous sacrifice, joy in suffering, bold loving, unwavering hope? What evidence of my faith in Jesus do those I love and live among see? (Matthew 5:16; 1 Corinthians 15:58; Hebrews 4:12; 11:1-40)

Lord, light up my eyes, keep me rejoicing and singing and purposefully pleasing You. May I not weary in doing good but work and serve wholeheartedly, in Your name, and for Your honor. May all my actions give evidence to my faith in Your character and promises, and magnify You as the trustworthy One Who is worthy of every effort. (Psalm 13:3,5-6; Galatians 6:9; Colossians 3:17,23; 2 Thessalonians 3:13; Hebrews 11:6; James 2:17-18)

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