I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it.
Thankful for the concern of God’s people
Have you ever had powdered milk? If you haven’t, don’t. It’s gross. As it sounds, you add water to powder and voila! Milk.
I remember the first time I had it. They just let dad know at work that they couldn’t pay him or any of his coworkers that month. My mom was a stay-at-home mom with a handful of kids. Money had to stretch. Meals were “creative.” And delicious, cold, milk was replaced by cheaper, pasty powdered milk. Bleh. And that wasn’t the worst thing. I remember overhearing my mom crying while she spoke with my dad. They didn’t know how they would make things work. Word was that there would be no payment the following month.
We easily take our next meal for granted. Most of us wonder what we’ll have for dinner, not if we will have dinner. In addition, many of us are discontent because we don’t have the latest iPhone, aren’t wearing the newest clothing (despite a dresser and closet full), and we don’t like food we have.
We would do ourselves a lot of good if we would pause and thank God for what he has given and how he gives it to us.
During the days of powdered milk, God did that for my family. One day out of the blue, some friends dropped by with a bunch of extra food that they had been given. They didn’t know about our situation. They dropped by “just because.” Coincidence? I think not.
God has a way of providing for us that we cannot explain. It all looks so ordinary. But our God works through the ordinary to do some of his most extraordinary work.
While Paul was in dire need, God used the Philippians to provide for him. They sent a gift to support him while he shared the gospel. These were ordinary people who gave him an ordinary gift in extreme times. He couldn’t help but overflow with thankfulness.
God has done the same for you and for me. The list is long. Parents and teachers, friends and governmental leaders, extended relatives, church family, and pastors too. Sure, they are imperfect. But God put them in your life with the purpose of caring for you in ways he has designed.
This is how God works, isn’t it? He did that in the life of his Son? He didn’t look like anyone special. He often didn’t have a place to lay his head. Even then he thanked his Father in heaven to live out the perfect thankfulness we lack. And in his sacrifice on the cross we have been forgiven from our discontentment and greed. Your God who saved you for eternity through the person of Jesus Christ also put people in your life to care for you hear and now.
Take a moment and thank him for the ordinary ways that he cares for you.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, you provide for us in so many ways, including the special people you put in our lives to care for us. We can’t help but thank you for loving us through these people. Open our hearts to live this thankfulness to you all our days. Amen.