Bible Reading: Revelation 2
 I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:  And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted.  Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.
Have you ever heard a preacher, or teacher use a phrase something like this “God is watching you, God sees you?” It’s a phrase we use as a scare tactic for children or teenagers to get them to do what’s right. The phrase is true, but it seems we use it in a negative connotation most times. Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. God not only sees the bad He sees the good as well. Verse 2 and 3 of Revelation 2 start in a positive way. Jesus is speaking in these verses and it starts by saying I know. Jesus is aware, He knows. What does Jesus know? He mentions a few things, first He says He knows thy works. Works here is defined as an act, deed, doing labor or work. God sees your service for Him, even when no one else does, God does, and He keeps record. Next it says He sees thy labour. Labour here means pains, trouble, grief, sorrow. Again God sees all, He knows all, He’s aware of the times you’ve been hurt. Third it says He sees thy patience. Patience is defined as perseverance, cheerful endurance, steadfastness. God sees every time you’ve stayed strong, every time you kept going when you could have quit. There are some other things herein these verses, but you get the point. God sees the times we worked for Him, the times we’ve hurt, and been in pain, he sees every time we are tempted and we resist that temptation, God knows, He is aware.
Jesus is speaking to the church of Ephesus here, and He says I have some good news for you. He says church, I’ve seen your work, labour, patience etc. I want you to know I’ve been watching you, and I’ve seen the good, but there’s also something I’ve seen that could use a little work. Jesus here essentially says, “I’ve got good news, and I’ve got some bad news.” They were doing a lot of good things, but they were lacking in love verse 4 tells us. Here’s my point today, as mature as you may be as a Christian, you may have been a Christian most of your life, but there is always room to grow. Always room for improvement. I heard a preacher say this week that his college professor taught them a prayer that I think would be good for us today, and that prayer was this. “Search me Lord, and be thorough with me. Psalm 139:23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. I challenge you to pray that prayer today, and let’s be ready and willing to obey the Lord.