May 22, 2023

“We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love which you have for all the saints,” –Colossians 1:3-4

The letter to the Colossians is one of the Apostle Paul’s most substantial writings. There are few books in the Bible with deeper reflection on who Christ is and the work of Christ in the world. Paul writes this letter to not only encourage the Colossians, but to remind them of all that they have and all that they are because of Christ.

It is interesting to me that Paul does not begin this letter with a great theological message or immediate instructions on how to do something in the church. Instead, he begins with gratitude. In the very beginning of the letter, Paul tells the people that, “We always thank God, The Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you.” Paul gives us a glimpse into his faith practice. Although his work on behalf of the church was hard, and the people he encountered were difficult, Paul lifted prayers of gratitude.

The Apostle Paul was very clear about his purpose in the world. He was called to share the gospel message of Christ.  Paul was tireless in his work. However, Paul knew it was important to take time to give thanks for the people in his life.

The letter to the Colossians has much to teach us. Perhaps the first lesson from this great letter is the importance of starting with gratitude. We are just a week away from Memorial Day. You might be planning a nice weekend at the lake, or a quick family trip. This week is also a good week to take time and give thanks for the people who have gone before us and blessed our lives.   I hope Paul’s practice of gratitude will serve as a reminder to us. We have much to look forward to this week, but if we first take time to look back and give thanks, we will be much better off.

– Rev. Keith King, Pastor of Worship