READ : Philippians 1:3-11
I thank my God every time I remember you . . . (v. 3)
When we left the church I had served in Holland, Michigan, the members of the congregation gave us a quilt to which each member contributed a square. In one of the squares was stitched this verse: “I thank my God every time I remember you.” It was and is a marvelous sentiment.
Paul gives thanks for the Philippians, not because they’re such wonderful people (though they may have been) but because they are his partners in the gospel. Together they are engaged in the common task of both living out and spreading the gospel. It is this partnership that makes his heart sing.
This partnership is not limited to “church work.” It is all of us in our various callings seeking to live our life “in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ” (1:27).
Sometimes, on Sunday, as I watch the cars pull into the church parking lot, I think of the people in those cars as partisans in the great spiritual battle. They are coming in from the battlefield after a week of hard combat. Some have been wounded; all have been tested. We gather to catch our breath, to remember that God is among us, and to worship. We’re partners in a great enterprise.
Dear God, we give you thanks for all who are our partners in the work of the gospel. Amen.