Philippians 1:4
Making Request with Joy

4 Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,

God has uniquely designed the local church to respond to the needs of people. As this conviction grows, so does the frustration. Interpersonal relationships within the church with God in worship and believers in fellowship, is the key to fulfilling this role. By misleading, misdiagnosis and legislating commitment, the potential for satisfying and nourishing life in the assembly diminishes. Too often, as sincere Christians continue on faithfully, their convictions harden into complacency and doctrinal orthodoxy declines into dogmatic traditionalism. Local churches have the responsibility to restore troubled people to peaceful, purposeful lives that can bear testimony to God’s redeeming power before a watching world.

As saints who have been called by God through the Gospel we share in common, unity of life in Christ. As those who have been placed into an assembly in a certain geographical area, we each have a role to fill in the work of God there. Each individual believer has their walk with God we share in fellowship with others, and our work for God for which we are responsible. The elders of an assembly are responsible for the souls of the Lord’s people by being guides who care for the inward life of the assembly. They are internal guides as it were who serve God and His people by example as well as personal care for their well-being. There was apostolic authority given at the beginning of the age to designate for the people those who the elders. Qualities and characteristics are given in written words in scripture for us today to identify those the Holy Spirit has raised up.

Deacons have been given the privilege, and responsibility for the external affairs of an assembly. Those who speak for the assembly publicly, whether it be in teaching and preaching, or in dealing with assembly affairs in the public domain are our visible/audible representatives and qualifications for their work is plainly given. This is no some obscure role they are called to fill, but a responsible work that represents all the saints. In neither of these important works is there any indication there is a salary paid for doing this work. These are voluntary servants who minister the Gospel and all that is associated with the furtherance of the work in a public way.

Holy joy is not a surprise but a result of my choice.
Thinking of God and His interest in you then I raise my voice
To put into the words of my prayers a passion that comes from God.
For God’s people are precious to me especially when owning Jesus as Lord.

When saints respond to God’s truth something comes alive in them.
The grace of God is obvious when they choose to follow Him.
Thinking of them as they gather, though we are far away,
Brings joy to my soul as I remember, these also are going God’s way.

Joy rises way above circumstances for a believer it comes from grace,
When we stop and consider God has brought us into a very large place.
Following where He leads is contentment when unsure of what’s ahead.
By faith we confidently go wherever the Spirit of God does lead.

Joy gives strength in hard labor; the result is worth the pain.
We know God brought us here and we know Jesus is always the same.
No matter what the outcome of an issue with joy we can endure,
Because we trust God to answer and accomplish that which is sure.

“Father, remember the faithfulness of Thy people in Newfoundland and Labrador. I remember them all with joy. The brothers and sisters laboring for Thee in Central America have a special place in our lives. We lift them before Thee with joy. The saints in my home assembly are getting old and weary. Yet their great faithfulness gives us joy. Bless and encourage them I pray.”

“I also, Father, give thanks to Thee for those of Thy people who have taken the vision Thou hast given them, and used them in Thy service. Bless them; give them heart and encourage them; allow them please to have some joy in the results of their service and labor. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.”

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