II. Thessalonians 1: 3-5,8-9
We went to church last Sunday here in Gladwin and the above scripture was the basis of the sermon. Wow! I thought. This passage speaks of my prayer for my family. "We ought always to thank God for you, brother, and rightly so, because your faith is growinng more and more , and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing." This is my heart's desire for each of my children. That you will allow your faith to grow and that as we become more and more apart from each other, each moving in separate circles we will still let our love for each other grow. I know that my faith has grown a lot this past year - growing faith doesn't just happen - it comes as we pass through trials, it comes as we take time to read the Bible and prayer, and it comes as we share our lives with others. I hope each of you can find the importance of growing your faith. Let us also continue to show love for each other by staying in touch and trying to encourage each other.
The next verse goes on - "Therefore among God's churches we boast about your perseverance and faith..." I hope that as you look back at my life you can see perseverance and faith as key elements. And I want to be able to boast about my children in that light. It doesn't matter the salary figure we make, the degree of education we have attained, or the number of friends we have. In the final count, it is our character - and I hope perseverance, commitment and faith is what I can boast about.
With the situation in the Middle East as delicate as it is, I cannot help but wonder if this age as we know it is coming to a close. Eternity is what is really going to count. I pray that I can count each one of you when I stand in Heaven. I would love to say to Jesus, "This is my complete family. We are all here to worship you."
This same passage gives a strong warning to those who do not heed the Gospel. "He will punish those who do not know God, and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord..." , Let us endeavor to hold true to faith, a personal faith.