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Quiet Time in 1 Thessalonians 2


EXPAND TO READ: 1 THESSALONIANS 2 (HCSB)

 

PERSONAL JOURNAL:


SIN (verse 4): Oftentimes in my life, even since coming to faith, I speak to please others instead of speaking what is true in my heart. I don’t do this all the time, but I have been guilty of this especially since coming to faith. Paul writes here that he has been entrusted with the gospel, so he speaks not to please men but to please God, who examines our hearts. Please forgive me for my worldly ways, Father. Forgive me for often giving into the thought that the things I say need to be pleasing to men. This is not what You expect of me. You expect me to always speak Your truth and what is pleasing to You, regardless of the reaction of those I’m speaking to. Help me to be better and more confident in my speaking to others, Father, so that I am pleasing to You in all that I say.

 

PROMISE (verse 4b): This one verse holds so much. At the end of the verse, Paul writes that he speaks in a way pleasing to You and You alone because You examine our hearts. I feel this is a promise from You to Your followers. I feel the promise is that You always know what is in our hearts, regardless of what comes out of our mouths. My hope is that what comes out of my mouth aligns with what’s in my heart and that both align with Your will for my life, so that as this promise is fulfilled daily that You are always pleased with the examination of my heart.

 

ATTITUDE (verses 5-6): Paul writes here that he never used flattering speech nor greedy motives when speaking to the Thessalonians. He adds that he never sought the glory from the people of this earth. He has truly embraced the spirit of humility and righteousness in his words towards the people that surround him. I have struggled with humility and righteousness in my life, especially in the way that I speak and act towards others. Help me to be better with these attitudes in my life, Father, so that as I speak to others about Your truth and Your glory, that it is the Spirit You have blessed me with that shines through and not my flesh.

 

COMMAND (verses 13-14): Not necessarily a direct command as some of Your scripture reveals to me, but I do feel Your commands are sprinkled in these two verses. You tell us, through Paul, that we are to receive the messages about God not as a message from humans but as a message of God. You tell us that we are to become imitators of God’s churches in Christ Jesus. Although there are a lot of deceptions in this world, there are also a lot of Godly examples, truths, and talk. I must have righteous discernment to be able to tell the difference, but I also must be accepting of what other Godly persons in this life speak to me. I must be accepting of those messages as if they were directly from You and not from man. I must also learn to be an imitator of those who are living a more righteous life than I am, which is plentiful. If I am imitating those who imitate Jesus, then I am essentially trying my best to do good works towards true righteousness. I will likely never attain full righteousness as Jesus did, because I am far from perfect, but it doesn’t mean that I just give up on trying. Continue to teach me, Father. Continue to put righteous, spiritual, Godly men in my life so that I can learn what it means to be one in this life. Help me to be more like Jesus and less like me.

 

EXAMPLE (verses 7-8, 11): You give us two examples here that are very practical and easily understood. The first example is how gentle and nurturing Paul was towards the Thessalonians in his speaking and mannerisms. He said he was just like a mother towards her children with them. The second example is on the other side of parents—the father. Paul said that he encouraged, comforted, and implored each of them to walk in a way worthy of God just like a father does with his children. Help me to embrace these examples and qualities of a loving, caring, nurturing, comforting, and encouraging man to those around me, Father. Help me to be better at sharing Your truth, but also encouraging those that are struggling like I am that You are near and that You are worthy.

 

*DAILY NOTE: Paul’s writings always seem to speak directly to me. I really do enjoy reading the word You gave us through Paul. Today You showed me many things that I need to resolve in my life to align myself with Your will, so that when You examine my heart You are thoroughly pleased. I know I have done many disappointing things in my life and I am sorry for that. I know I will likely continue to do some disappointing things in this life as I get older. I also know that Your grace is sufficient and that You know that I am not a perfect being in this life. I have a lot of “baggage” that I am still holding onto that is weighing me down from truly walking in the life You expect of me. I also know that I am getting better at letting go and releasing that baggage to You as I mature in my faith. I know that these quiet times with You, through the relationship and conversations we are continuing to have, are vital to my spiritual maturity. I thank You for all You are doing in me, Father, even though I do resist at times. Continue Your works in me so that as I do get older, I fail less often and recover more quickly from my failures.

 

EXPAND TO READ: GENERAL NOTE FOR MY QUIET TIMES


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