November is a month dedicated to remembering, reflecting and giving thanks. As people of God, and as Americans, we have much to be grateful for. We say “thank you” to those who have served in armed forces on our behalf. Let us also not forget to pray over the men and women serving our country today. Away from family. Away from friends. Away from the comfort and security of home.
“When people ask me how they can pray for me, I tell them, ‘Colossians 1:9-12.’ There is nothing I want or need more than what these verses explain,” explained Jim, Vietnam Veteran and dear friend.
Colossians 1:9-12 (MSG) reads, “Be assured that from the first day we heard of you, we haven’t stopped praying for you, asking God to give you wise minds and spirits attuned to his will, and so acquire a thorough understanding of the ways in which God works. We pray that you’ll live well for the Master, making him proud of you as you work hard in his orchard. As you learn more and more how God works, you will learn how to do your work. We pray that you’ll have the strength to stick it out over the long haul—not the grim strength of gritting your teeth but the glory-strength God gives. It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us.”
I agree with Jim. There is nothing I want or need more than more of Jesus. More of His wisdom. More of His understanding. More of His ability to be patience- to persevere through hard times. More of Him. It is enduring hard times that produces joy. Enduring encourages a heart of gratitude. A grateful heart fosters an environment of for joy to grow.
Jim taught me a good lesson,not just as a Vietnam Veteran, but as a veteran Christ follower, with decades of life behind him. Ups. Downs. Successes. Failures. Pains. Trials. Testings. Fears. Doubts. Faith. Hope. Love. Joy. Peace. And wonder. Circumstances change. Family and friends come and go. At the end of the day, ONE thing remains. Our relationship with God the Father is forever. Living a life that pleases and honors Him is all that matters in the end.
If you need strength and wisdom today, I encourage you to take these words and write them on a card. Read them aloud. As you read His word I pray he fills you with his “glory-strength”. Find confidence in knowing that when God’s word is sent out it does not return void. (Isaiah 55:11) He will hear the cry of your spirit. What more could please His heart than our desire for more of Him?
As you go about the rest of your week and enjoy a Thanksgiving Feast, know I am praying these words over you. I pray that this holiday you “take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for you.” Have a wonderful Thanksgiving surrounded with loved ones and friends and surrounded by the loving arms of the Heavenly Father.