for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Philippians 1:5-6 NLT
The believers in Philippi had been faithful supporters to the propagation of the gospel since their conversion and established faith in Jesus. Their consistent support had greatly encouraged Paul in his efforts. These people were special to Paul and were a breath of fresh air to him. They placed wind beneath his wings and wind in his sail. He was most thankful for these fellow believers. Something we must remember is that being a devout follower of Christ in that time was a challenging thing. In many of the places where the churches had been established there was hostility toward the faith. Some faced death threats and even death itself. Their faith wasn't superficial, it was substantial. When we have fellow believers who don't mind being in the trenches with us in the midst of the battle we grow very fond of them. When the battle rages, it is fortifying to have faithful brothers and sisters in Christ that fuel our spirit rather than deplete it. The pains of betrayal, forsaking, and misunderstanding can leave a deep sting beyond description. In 2 Timothy 4:10 Paul states that Demas had forsaken him. In 2 Timothy 4:14 Paul speaks of Alexander the coppersmith doing him much harm. However, one simple act or one word of encouragement from a fellow believer can cheer us on. In Philippians 2 Paul speaks of Epaphroditus as a true brother, co-worker, and fellow soldier. In Philippians 4 Paul mentions his appreciation for his fellow laborers, naming Clement, and stating that their names were in the book of life. There are those that have been my personal friends in the faith that have consistently and faithfully stood with me regardless of the circumstances of ministry. I'm eternally grateful for them. I'm sure that there are people, right now, that come to mind with respect to their steadfast support of your faith and service to Jesus Christ. Lift that person to God today in prayer and share your love of them with them. We need each other in this endeavor. We can count on God being faithful to do what He has said He will do. He will never leave or forsake us. He will stay the course and finish the work in us. PRAISE GOD FOR HIS FAITHFULNESS!!!!!!!
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Rev. Curtis Norris