the faith and love that spring from the hope stored up for you in heaven and about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel that has come to you. In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world - just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God's grace. You learned it from Epaphrus, our dear fellow servant, who is a a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.
Faith, hope and love is a familiar "Paul" formula that he speaks about often. The basis of the Colossian believer's faith and love is their hope in heaven...their minds were on the next life....their focus is on the next life!
From the day they heard the gospel and truly understood God's grace -- that means grasping truly how they received something they did not deserve from God, which is forgiveness and the right to enter eternity with Him forever -- it bore fruit and grew amongst the people. They couldn't dare keep this blessed hope to themselves! Just try and stop them! You can't!
Because of their focus on the next world, they are making a big difference this world
Ahhh....yes....we are introduced to the faithful "man of the hour" who planted this church and is reporting to Paul about them....Ephaprus. What a guy!
Ephaprus is ONE man who changed his world. One. It just takes one. You. Me. We are just one. We qualify.
Oh, that our minds would ever be on the next world, stirring a blazing fire in us to walk in faith, hope, and love to make a difference in our world! Our world....where we go day to day....just everywhere we are. This is where our work is.....wherever we are right now. Now. Right now.
This changes how I deal with the day-to-day and the people woven in. I realize it's not about me. It's not even about that thing that just happened that made me mad, sad, distracted, or irritated, or glad, or fed up, or worried or anything. We aren't wrestling with the flesh and blood of life, but the powers of dark and the forces of evil (Ephesians 6:12). The enemy wants us to check out of our real blessed goal and focus on the big fat distraction he just plopped into it.
Nope! Not anymore! We are going to put our Ephesians 6:10-17 armor and make a difference in our world. Thank You God....and thank you Ephaprus...man with a funny name who became the change you wanted to see and inspired us to do the same!
Lord, thank You! Thank you for the blessed hope I have in heaven. Thank You for Your mercy and grace. Help me be the change and make a difference in my world, where I am and right now. Set Your Holy fire ablaze in me that Your gospel spread like a wildfire of faith, hope and love in all that I am, everywhere that I am and to everyone I see. For Your glory forever and ever.
In Jesus name, Amen.