I read through 1 Thessalonians 1 this morning, and I had a couple of “take homes” I thought I’d share here.
1) Paul, and his companions in missions, were constantly praying for the people they encountered, and churches they planted. It says that they “were in prayer for [them] always. ” I know that I have a bad rep (internally) of forgetting to actually be in constant prayer for friends, family, and the Church at large when I say I will be. We live in a world constantly vying for our attention – and most times we allow it to be stolen. So let’s follow Paul’s example and seek to be in constant prayer for those we love, those we come in contact with, our enemies, and God’s Church – here and abroad.
2) Paul’s ministry has been made easier by one huge factor: the Thessalonians’ example among Asia Minor. Their faith is well renown. I work a secular job, in a practically Christless nation. My life needs to reflect this Light I profess. They were spoken about and praised the world over. While I never expect that kind of praise, I think it’s fair to strive to be seen in the light of Him! We are meant to be peculiar, different, special. Our lives, actions, words, thoughts need to make people ask, “what makes you special? Why do you act like that in the face of opposition?”
So. This week, how can you be special, peculiar, different to those around you?
Today’s sermon was on how to be thankful as opposed to sinful. That the opposite to sinful desires such as covetousness, crude talk, and sexual immorality are thankfulness. The more you think about it, the more sense it makes.
To be thankful is to understand the grace we are given every day. Christ has fulfilled our every true need – defeating our covetous desires. He has reformed our hearts, instilling in us the desire to rid ourselves of crude and harsh talk. And He is our Groom, the only One who we can look to to supply any need.
Now with that all said we still sin. We are still tempted. We still live in this fallen world. But we are thankful for grace. We are thankful for love. We are thankful for the beauty that is The Lord God. We are thankful and we are struggling – and that’s a beautiful place to be.
I saw that grace a little bit today in two ways. Our meal was paid for by a fellow church member without us knowing. It was a humbling experience to know we were taken care of, and there was nothing we could do but be thankful. Then, when plans to hangout and see a movie fell through, due to being a part of a more full family, our friends understood and we worked around it. I think that was pretty gracious of them! 😉
I just pray that I strive to live my life daily around God’s grace towards me, and do my best to reflect that grace into the lives of those around me.
It’s been a while since I’ve attempted blogging. But I think I may be a little better at it now. I’m currently journaling my experience as a new dad, as well as a prayer journal, and I’m (sort of) trying out my hand at story writing.
This WordPress is going to be my way to dive into Scripture more – to interact with my world around me. I need to be in the Word more often, and this may be my drive to do it! So, hold me accountable! This is just a “hello” post – so now I’m off to bed. Goodnight world.
1 John 3:11