We ought to thank God always for you, brothers, as is fitting, because your faith flourishes ever more, and the love of every one of you for one another grows ever greater. 2 Thessalonians 1:3 NABRE
In this second letter to the community at Thessalonica, Paul opens with a greeting and as is customary in his letters, he gives thanks to God. We read here exactly Paul’s message of thanks to God for the people of the community. It begins, “we ought to” give thanks, which might not sound like a warm or sincere thanks, but it is not an uncommon way to express thanks in biblical language. We too ought to give thanks to God for all we have, as Paul constantly thanks God. Paul knows it is God’s intervention that spreads the gospel, and those who are the workers of the community are present because of divine inspiration. In thanking God Paul also mentions the faith of those in the community, it is growing and their love for the others in the community grows greater every day as well. Love is the key message of the gospel, and therefore it is no surprise Paul is mentioning it at the beginning of the letter. Paul is a great encourager, knowing to point to God in all that is done. In his previous letter, Paul, says rejoice always, in all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God (see 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.) For Paul every aspect of life is a reason to thank God. It is not to say God creates bad things, but when bad things happen God inspires loving responses. Gratefulness is the best way to live and Paul epitomizes this attitude despite his circumstances.
Be grateful, thank God unceasingly, and thank those in your life regularly. Live in a manner that shows you are a child of God who will always lead you back to Him.
Are you naturally grateful? Who is someone you need to thank?Be grateful, thank God unceasingly, and thank those in your life regularly. Live in a manner that shows you are a child of God who will always lead you back to Him. Click To Tweet
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