Paul gives thanks to the Philippians in Phil 4:10-20 for the practical help they gave him. As Jesus reminded us in the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats, we serve God when we serve other people (see Matt 25:31-46), and this can be seen in a variety of ways (which often we don’t think are particularly significant.) Jesus mentioned clothing people, feeding people, helping the sick and visiting those in prison; for Paul, he was grateful for the financial help offered to him by the Philippians and spent much of his time dealing with the practical issues of collecting money from different churches to give aid to the church in Jerusalem. Such things may not seem particularly glamorous or even spiritual, but they are necessary and God promises rewards to those who sow generously (see 2 Cor 8 and 9).

We are grateful to all who support our church and its ministries, whether that is through finances (we are glad to be able to support Bedline in Haiti, Amshika in India and Innocent in Uganda and to have been able to help those in India with whom Fredrick and Reeba work as well as supporting the local Salvation Army food bank), practical help (cleaning the building, serving in different areas and helping with ministry) and prayer and preaching. Faithful service and practical help are not inconsequential or unimportant. That cup of cold water to someone on a hot and dusty day matters enormously. Your kind word, your smile, your practical help could be the way someone’s heart is melted or how their eyes are opened to spiritual truth. It’s worth repeating that it’s the little things in life that really count and we can never show our gratitude too much!