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Devotional - week of March 5, 2017


SPIRITUAL REFRESHING

For we have great joy and consolation in your love, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed by you, brother Philemon 1:7

In this verse Paul is commending Philemon for his part in refreshing the saints in Colosse. In addition Paul commends Philemon for refreshing him. As he writes in verse 20:

Yes, brother, let me have joy from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in the Lord.

In 2 Timothy 1:16 Paul implies that he often needed refreshment. He writes:

The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me …

In these verses Paul expresses a need in his own life that is a need of all believers in times of difficult circumstances or depression—perhaps this need comes because of our failures.  

Bible reading and prayer are refreshing. However, all of Paul’s references to refreshment concern its supply coming from other believers.

We should be open to God’s refreshing us through one or more of His children. We also need to be available to God as a source of refreshment to others.

Paul mentions this mutual work of refreshment in his letter to the church at Rome. He writes:

… that I may come to you with joy by the will of God, and may be refreshed together with you.  Romans 15:32

How can we best provide the spiritual refreshment to our brothers and sisters in Christ?  

When we permit Christ to be our substitutionary life, He becomes the source of refreshment for fellow believers through us.