“So you received the message with joy from the Holy Spirit in spite of the severe suffering it brought you. In this way, you imitated both us and the Lord. As a result, you have become an example to all the believers in Greece—throughout both Macedonia and Achaia. And now the word of the Lord is ringing out from you to people everywhere, even beyond Macedonia and Achaia, for wherever we go we find people telling us about your faith in God. We don’t need to tell them about it,”
1 Thessalonians 1:6-8
Paul wrote this letter to the church of the Thessalonians because he heard news about that church. Paul shows in this letter joy and relief to hear that they remained firm in the faith even after Paul left them. He said that they were imitating Jesus, because of their joy even over the suffering the gospel brought them. But because of that, they became an example to believers in another places.
Sometimes the gospel can bring suffering to me. If I suffer because of it, I can imitate Christ by finding the joy that comes from the Holy Spirit. If I can do that, suffer and have joy, then:
– I can become an example to other believer, to keep joy in the Lord;
– The Word of God will ring from me to everywhere.
Lord, when I suffer, it is easier to complain rather than have joy. I pray that through my suffer, I can find the joy of the Holy Spirit in the message of the gospel. That the good news already reached me because of the suffer Jesus had at the cross. That you already paid it all. Help me to find joy in the midst of situations where I don’t see any solution. So through my life I can motivate others and your word can resonate from me to the others.