Finally, brothers, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you. And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men, for not everyone has faith. But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one. 2 Thessalonians 3:1-3

In this passage, Paul is requesting intercessory prayer on his behalf as he continues on his missionary journey. He knows there will be opposition from wicked and evil people. He also knows that the congregation of believers he is now leaving can help him by offering prayers to God. The success he has had in one location can be carried forward to others.

The message today is still the same. Our work as a synod and as participants in the LWMS is to bring peace to all through Jesus.  Missionary women may not receive top billing or attention in the mission of our North American outreach, but they are vital ingredients, just the same. All women in our churches can help missionary women as we daily pray for our men and women in the mission fields. We know that sin is a terminal illness without faith in Christ Jesus, our champion, our Savior. We are saved by his intervention and we want to share this joyful fact with other women. Praying for our missionary women is a good habit to develop.

“We have confidence in the Lord that you are doing and will continue to do the things we command. May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance” (2 Thessalonians 3:4-5). In this instance, the assurance that our prayers are heard comes from the Lord who directs and preserves us in our work in home missions and in the service of missionary women everywhere.

We often sing the missionary hymn, “From Greenland’s Icy Mountains”. This hymn writer served as Bishop of Calcutta, where he died at the age of forty-three. For sixteen years he had served a congregation in England, and for only three years he served in this foreign mission. Whether we serve at home or in a far away place, missionary women serve in special ways all their own. They may bind up wounds, teach classes, enrich family life, play musical instruments, or be good listeners. Many differing talents are useful to our Lord.

Can we whose souls are lighted with wisdom from on high,
Can we to men benighted the lamp of life deny?
Salvation! O, Salvation! The joyful sound proclaim
Till each remotest nation has learned Messiah’s name. Amen. (CW 571)

Ruth Sellnow

From “Beautiful Feet, Meditations for Missionary Women”
Produced by LWMS in 2006