Have you ever felt your service to The Lord was insignificant? After all you’re no Billy Graham leading thousands to Christ each year. But what you do for God as led by The Holy Spirit makes a difference. Verses 3-4 read,
“We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. 4 Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring.”
Paul thanked God for the believers in Thessalonica because their faith was growing and their love was increasing. Their faith and love, and the steadfastness with which they faced persecutions grew the church. They became partners with Paul, they became partners with The Holy Spirit for completing the great commission to make disciples. In his letter to the Philippians Paul wrote in verses 3-6,
“I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, 5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. 6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”
He uses each of us if we are willing, and because the same Spirit is within each of us because we should have a common goal. We all have a part to play. He gives us each different gifts, one person’s part is not the same as another but they are linked. 1 Corinthians 12:4-11 says,
“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.11 All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.”
We are partners together in the gospel. One man I know likes to picture it as a field and a harvest. One man tills the soil, another plants the seed, one man waters, another fertilizes, and another brings in the harvest. Your part may seem little and you may never see the fruit, but you have a part and it is vital.
One person’s service is connected to another. We form sort of a chain, one small work linked to another and another. Maybe the coffee you bought for that homeless man was the act which sparked his interest in Jesus, maybe it was the act that made him realize it was time to make a decision. It is God calling the person to salvation, it is the same Spirit in each of us working to bring them to salvation.
If we are living and walking in obedience to Christ, we are playing a role in bringing people to Him. As the church grows, the impact of our service grows as well. If we are living and walking in obedience to Christ then our love for another and our service builds up, encourages, and unifies the church. Ephesians 4:11-13 reads,
“And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,”
You may feel your role is trivial or irrelevant but it is not. You are a royal priest, gifted by God and filled with His amazing and awesome Spirit. Do your part joyfully and know that God is doing great things. Be thankful for your fellow believers, your partners in the gospel and be happy to hear the wonderful things God is doing through them and you, through all of us.