“But, brothers, when we were torn away from you for a short time (in person, not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you.” 1 Thessalonians 2:17
Paul, being involuntarily separated from the believers he dearly loved in Thessalonica, felt "torn away", orphaned and deprived of their presence after a brief absence. Though physically unable to be together, those who meant so much remained near and dear to his heart and were often on his mind. Out of that “intense longing“ he made every effort to see them yet found himself blocked at every turn by the enemy, whose mission it is to obstruct the work of the Lord.
So he wrote a letter.
How relevant the Word to the days we are living in — unable to gather with the believing friends and family we love — particularly this week, Holy Week. What if we said, “Not today, Satan!” and connected anyway? What if we scheduled virtual coffee dates, put some love in the mail, or took a few minutes to send a text or make a phone call? What if we reached out to those we know are quarantining alone and brightened their day?
Let’s look heavenward and ask God who He wants us to “see” outside our own four walls today and remind them they are not alone, they’re on our heart and in our thoughts, and they are never out of God’s sight.
And then do it again tomorrow and the next day, focusing less on ourselves and our circumstances so our hearts swell with the joy of fixing our gaze on the Father and others.