But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you. 1 Thessalonians 3:6 (NIV).
I daydream. A lot. My daydreams are usually about owning a house on the beach, or a house on a lake. Sometimes they’re about another trip to Disney, or working in a village in Uganda, or fishing on my favorite lake in Minnesota, or working in my old garden. Mostly, though, they are about being with other people, usually members of my family. When I think about the good times in my life, people I love are always involved.
Knowing that, it’s easy to see that Paul was talking about his love for the Thessalonians and how gladdened he was to hear that they missed him. He was uplifted to learn that his new friends there in Thessalonica wanted to see him as much as he wanted to see them. More than that, Paul was heartened to learn that their faith and love, expressed as charity for others, was growing. That the message he had told them about Jesus was growing, that there was love.
It’s a beautiful thing to realize you’re loved. Have you realized that lately?
I know a few folks who are going through severe marital problems. It looks very much like those problems will lead to divorce, and that’s tragic. It’s tragic to realize that the person you loved and who loved you no longer does. That another focus has replaced that love in their, and your, life. You put your heart, your time, your life into someone else’s heart, time, and life, and it ends up as a wasteland. It’s devastating.
I wonder if my friends have realized they’re still loved. When depression grabs your heart, it turns everything dark. It’s so hard to see that others still love you. That, in the middle of your darkness, the very real life-light of Jesus is still shining for you. If only you could break through the desperate fog that’s hiding that light…
…that happens when you’re open to hearing good news. Paul heard good news from his protégé, Timothy, that the Thessalonians believed, that the message of Jesus had taken root and was growing. That they missed Paul. When you’re feeling lonely, as Paul was, it is good to hear how others remember you. Sometimes it can make all the difference in the world.
That’s what I daydream about. The older I get, the more I cherish time with my family and friends because in those times, the love of God is being shared. It’s the best thing there is.
For further reading: 1 Thessalonians 3:7.
Lord, thank You for times with people I love. Thank You for sharing Your wonderful love through us.