I was rummaging through some old files the other day when I ran across a big envelope full of treasures—a collection of thank-you notes from my students during the last year I taught in high school. They brought back some cherished memories.

Reading them reminded me of the importance of letting people know how much they are appreciated. Thank-you notes afford us the opportunity to make permanent our feelings of gratitude for our friends or loved ones.

The apostle Paul sent a thank-you note to the Christians in Philippi. They were the only church that had supported him financially on his missions trip (Phil. 4:15), and he wanted to say thanks. But he did more. He told the people specifically what good they had done by helping him. Through Paul, the people reached out to places they could never visit. They met Paul’s necessities (v.16). Their gifts bore spiritual fruit (v.17). They pleased God (v.18). And they received the promise of God’s provision for them (v.19).

Thank-you notes work both ways. They help the sender to express appreciation, and they help the recipient to know what he has done to assist. It’s a great combination.

Does someone you know deserve a note of thanks?