But since we were torn away from you, brothers, for a short time, in person not in heart, we endeavored the more eagerly and with great desire to see you face to face, because we wanted to come to you–I, Paul, again and again–but Satan hindered us. For what is our hope or joy or crown of boasting before our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you? For you are our glory and joy. 1 Thessalonians 2:17-20
Paul viewed the members of the churches he helped found as his spiritual children. Paul was not married and had no children so it is not a stretch to see why Paul would thing of these people as his children. Paul was not ashamed to let these people know how much he cared for them. But, he also let them know how much joy they brought him
Who are your spiritual children? Who have you brought to Christ or shared Christ with? Who have you mentored in the faith? Which lives have you touched for Christ? You might be surprised how many lives you have touched. If you have taken your own children to church that is a great start. Just participating in a Bible study or Sunday school class can help someone else come closer to Christ.
Many times all you need do is be yourself. Set a good example. Help someone out of a tough spot. Listen to a friend. Buy a homeless person a meal. Someone is always watching and your actions may just change their lives.
Then take joy just as Paul did on the success of those you have influenced. The joy we get from others is priceless. I believe that is one thing we will take with us to heaven. Then that joy will be increased as we find out how many people we did impact here in this life.
Have a joyful and blessed day,