The Principle of:
Being Aware of Others
It is comforting to a flock under pressure when they know
their Shepherd knows them by name and is aware of their work in The Lord
I Thessalonians 1:3
Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father.
Those early preachers were aware of the people to whom they ministered and took note of the good that was in them.
The words without ceasing in the above verse, more properly belong with the pre ceding verse about praying. The two words come from the Greek adialeíptos which mean "as an unvarying practice." It was Paul's unvarying practice to pray specifically for the people under his watchful care.
But it was also his unvarying practice to take note of their work of faith, their labour of love, and their patience of hope. Faith, love and hope are three "Kingdom Commodities." They are part of the fruit that the Holy Spirit will produce in us. With each of them come outward expressions: work, labour, patience. Paul took simple note of this and, thus, encouraged the people to grow in their faith, love and hope.
Too many of us in leadership are remiss in taking note of what people do in their service to the Lord, or of what they do for others. When I was a very young Pastor, I went one day into a room where some women were working in preparation for children's Bible classes. When I left the room, I overheard one of them say, "He didn't see a thing we had done." It was too late then, but how I wished I had noticed what they had done and had encouraged them in it. I was insensitive and rude.
One of the most significant things about Paul's ministry was that he was aware of persons. He called them by name and took note of what they did. Look at this passage from Romans. The mighty Apostle, recipient of some of the greatest revelation ever given to man, named person after person simply because they were people who maintained a work of faith, a labor of love and a patience of hope.
1 I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at
2 That ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you: for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also.
3 Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus:
4 Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.
5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my well beloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ.
6 Greet Mary, who bestowed much labour on us.
7 Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.
8 Greet Amplias my beloved in the Lord.
9 Salute Urbane, our helper in Christ, and Stachys my beloved.
10 Salute Apelles approved in Christ. Salute them which are of Aristobulus' household.
A PERSON'S NAME is important to them. Do what you can to learn the name of every person under your care and call them by name when speaking to them or of them. This gentle recognition of their worth will prove very comforting to them in the day of trial.
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