Sunday, December 2                          1 Thessalonians 3:9-13           O.D. Lively

9 How can we thank God enough for you, given all the joy we have because of you before our God? 10 Night and day, we pray more than ever to see all of you in person and to complete whatever you still need for your faith. 11 Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus guide us on our way back to you. 12 May the Lord cause you to increase and enrich your love for each other and for everyone in the same way as we also love you. 13 May the love cause your hearts to be strengthened, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his people. Amen.

In our scripture today, Timothy has just returned from a visit to the church at Thessalonica with a great report of their love, respect, and steadfastness in the Lord. Paul is asking what thanksgiving items he can be in prayer for on behalf of the congregation at Thessalonica.

In addition to Paul’s prayers, to be able to see the congregation at Thessalonica face to face, he wants to supply what is lacking in their faith. He continues to pray that their love for one another will increase so their hearts will be filled with holiness before God and the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

So, as we struggle to define the size and arrangement of our new church building and at the same time how we pay for it, may we have faith that God will guide us.  If we have the love for each other that we should have, and believe that our Christmas stockings will be filled with all the things we need- faith, generosity, and determination- we will find a willingness to work together.

Prayer: For faith in the face of uncertainty.