“We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers…”
for you all,
The Gospel team gave thanks not only for the honorable believers at Thessalonica but also for all believers. We do not have to approve of Christians to pray for them. They do not have to answer to us before we can pray for them. God calls us to pray for “all” Christians. Thank God that they came to Christ. Thank God for any contribution they make to the cause of Christ.
making mention of you in our prayers
The word “prayers” signifies invocation. This is a more general term than the term “petition.” Paul is saying that he makes mention of them in prayer. He calls people by name in prayer. That is a good way to gossip. Gossip on your knees!
Paul loved God’s people enough to pray specifically for them by name. Prayer takes memory. How many fellow Christians do you remember, remember in prayer? Paul says in the next verse – “remembering without ceasing….”
Thanksgiving is the capacity to appreciate what God is doing in our lives.
God is the author of all that is good toward us. Thanksgiving is the capacity to appreciate God’s goodness to us, and not only for the good but even for the disagreeable things that might happen to us. We come to realize that everything that God allows to come into our lives He does it for our good (Ro 8:28).
When we give thanks, we give something to God. We can give money to God, but we can give thanks to Him as well.
Ep 5:20, “…giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…”
Co 1:12, “…giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.”
Co 3:17, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”
Do you daily thank God for your salvation? Thank God that you have your health. Thank God for your church and your pastor, who feed you the Word of God. Thank God for each believer you know personally, for he is a walking representative of the Lord Jesus Christ. Granted, some do not represent Him very well, but there is some semblance of Christ in them. There are so many places where there is divine dearth; there is no witness, no vitality, no evangelism, and no momentum of evangelism. We need every witness we can find.
Thank God for every movement of evangelism in the world. Do you thank God for anyone besides your husband or wife or children? Granted, it is easier to thank God for some than others, but our passage says to give thanks for “all” Christians. How many people for whom do you pray? Apart from your favorites, for whom do you pray? Do you pray for those who are advancing the cause of Christ?
The church at Thessalonica was born out of affliction. Out of the crucible of affliction come strong churches.
Paul had a prayer list – do you?