Happy Monday! I hope you enjoyed your day and weekend of thanks. Today we will continue in 1 Corinthians chapter 16, which is the close of Paul’s instructions after he wrote, 13 Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous.[c] Be strong. 14 And do everything with love.”

15 You know that Stephanas and his household were the first of the harvest of believers in Greece,[d] and they are spending their lives in service to God’s people. I urge you, dear brothers and sisters,[e] 16 to submit to them and others like them who serve with such devotion. 17 I am very glad that Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus have come here. They have been providing the help you weren’t here to give me. 18 They have been a wonderful encouragement to me, as they have been to you. You must show your appreciation to all who serve so well.1 Corinthians 16:15-18 NLT

Sisters and brothers, Paul wrote this letter to the church thousands of years ago. His approach and instructions are still relevant today. In these verses Paul provides instruction on how to care for and support leaders in the church who serve with such devotion – spending their lives in service to God’s people. Often times we do not express much gratitude or thankfulness for pastors and missionaries who devote their lives with authenticity to kingdom work. However, today is a great day to start thanking (showing appreciation for) all who serve in and outside of the church. Not everyone who serves, serves for their own benefit, they serve because of their love for God, thankfulness for what Jesus Christ has done and continues to do and for God’s people. Instead of being disappointed with a message or indifferent within the church, pray for your pastor(s) and church leaders daily, they still face the same spiritual battles that you face.

Today’s challenge, pray for your pastor(s), leaders in the church, people in the church and ministries around the world ( including this one).

  1. Which pastor(s) are you praying for? __________, ________, _________, ___________, and __________.
  2. Which leader/leaders are you praying for? __________, ________, __________, and _________.
  3. Which person/people are you praying for? __________, ________, __________, and _________.
  4. What ministries/churches around the world are you praying for? ________, _________, _________, __________, and Mary E. White Ministries.

Father God, thank you for your grace and mercy. Thank you for sending your son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for our sins. Lord God, thank you for Jesus’ victory over sin and death. Lord, forgive us for the sins that we have committed. Lord, we desire to live our lives for you. Lord, pour your Holy Spirit into our hearts and fill our minds with so much of you that it goes into overflow. Lord, let that overflow change our speech and how we see each other. Let, your words become our words and your heart become our heart. Lord, wherever we are insecure, help us to be secure in you. Lord, you know our hearts, begin to remove any bitter root that has tried or has taken root within us. Lord, we don’t want to be bitter and cynical any longer, we want to be filled with you. Continue to transform us and your church. We ask all these things in the name above all names – In Jesus name, amen.

Keep praying! Keep Trusting! Keep believing!

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