An Extended Welcome...

As we begin our work with this congregation, I am reminded of three things that Paul wrote to the church at Thessalonica in 2 Thessalonians 3:

1) "Finally, brothers and sisters, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored..."

In verse 1 of chapter 3, Paul delivers a wonderful exhortation to his extended church family. Our family prays every day for the members at Rogersville and for those who may come in contact with us throughout the days, weeks, months, and years ahead. We pray that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored in our lives and that those principles we have learned will allow us to be a good example to all we may deal with each day.

2) "May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ."

In verse 5, Paul expounds on the above idea by explaining that it is the outward showing of the love of God that will direct our hearts in the proper pathway and it is our steadfastness in Christ that allows us to live a more abundant life than we could ever hope or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). We pray that the love of God is seen in our lives and that it may encourage you to a stronger steadfastness in Christ.

3) "Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way."

Finally, in verse 16 of this final chapter, Paul expresses something that I wish for all of you and for those who live in our sphere of influence. I pray that God blesses you with peace. It seems so simple, yet it is the one thing that our world consistently is striving for but never seems to gain. Peace only comes from one source and that is the Father above.

I hope these words are encouraging to you and I pray that you may use them to encourage others to receive the welcome that is extended from us here at Rogersville.