PAUL'S PRAISE FOR THE COLOSSIAN CHRISTIANS
Paul had sincere words of praise for each church whenever he could honestly give them. What did he say about the Christians at Colosse?
Firstly he was thankful for them (v. 3). Stop and ask yourself. Do I give thanks for fellow Christians? The grace of gratitude too often lies undeveloped in many Christians' hearts.
Secondly, he was prayerful for them. Paul seems to have had a very long prayer list which he covered regularly. He said so to many of the churches. What does that say to us today?
Then he described them as faithful. It can mean both reliable or full of faith. To be reliable is a great asset in Christian service. If others can depend on us to do what we promise, it is a wonderful help in any church.
To be full of faith is also a tremendous blessing in a church situation. Christianity begins with personal faith in Jesus Christ and his Word. Then our relationship with him continues by faith. We are eternally secure in him. However our personal confidence, our vision of what God can do will grow as we learn day by day to put our trust in the Lord.
Paul also said they had love for all the saints. Isn't that a beautiful compliment? It is easy to love those we like or those who agree with us but Paul says they loved all saints. Do we need to underline that one word 'all'? What did Christ say? By this shall all men know that you are my disciples if you have love one for another.'
There are other words too that Paul used when he spoke of the Colossian Christians. One is that they had hope. This is one of the great differences between a Christian and the rest of the world. The Christian says 'This world is not my home-I'm just passing through'. Our hope is based on the promises of God and helps us take our eyes off this world and focus them on the next. Faith lays hold of the cross. Hope looks on to the glory.