How do you thank some one, show your appreciation and at the same time glorify your Lord? Paul shows us here when he says, “I thank my God…” There was a time when Paul spoke of his faith in terms of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, but here he speaks of a personal relationship—it is not the God of his father’s but “my God.” Everything he did in life—even thanking his friends—was governed by his relationship with God.
There is a depth expressed in this form of appreciation that will be a greater encouragement to your friend than a simple “thanks.” First, it shows that you are bringing your friend before the Lord in prayer. Second, it tells your friend that the Lord is using him or her in your life. Third, it draws attention—gives glory to—to the sovereign God in your relationship. Paul’s thanks was not a mere gratitude for what the Philippians had done for him, but for what they were in the gospel and what they had done through the grace and the power of the gospel (see verse 6). The next time you are thankful for a friend, thank God first and then let them know.
Reading: “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.”—Philippians 1:3