REFRESHING THE HEARTS OF THE LORD’S PEOPLE! The Apostle Paul in writing a short letter to his friend Philemon commended him for his heart of love and the great joy and encouragement he brought to many people. To quote Paul, “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people,” (Philemon v.7 NIV). We live in a society today where there are too many people who are always talking about all the world’s problems and bringing discouragement, despair and disappointment wherever they go. I think too many Christians fall into this category. You know who these people are because the minute they walk into the room you are looking for an escape route. That’s sad. What a blessing it is when we come across someone like Philemon. I don’t mean someone who tries to sell us a program of the power of positive thinking but I mean someone who really knows Jesus and lives and talks about the power of Jesus in abundant living. I don’t mean someone who has never known the challenges of life whether they are physical, mental, financial, or the loss of loved ones. I mean someone who has found joy in Jesus and shares that joy. I mean someone who has been encouraged by Jesus and given hope through the Holy Spirit. I mean someone who is able to refresh the hearts of the saints simply by their presence, heart, attitude and words. I mean someone who may be standing in the middle of life’s most difficult circumstances along with us and yet helps us to find joy, maybe even a smile, and yes peace. Have you found those Philemon’s in your life? They may be male or female. Count your blessings. Name them one by one. Pray for them. You can’t know too many “Philemons” no matter the name you call them.