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Quiet Time in 1 Thessalonians 5


EXPAND TO READ: 1 THESSALONIANS 5 (HCSB)

 

PERSONAL JOURNAL:


SIN (verse 14b): At the tail end of this verse is something I have struggled with my entire life, even since coming to faith—patience. Paul writes that we are to be patient with everyone, yet I struggle to be patient even with those closest to me at times. You have been so amazingly patient with me, yet for some reason I struggle to show the same patience towards those around me. Please forgive me for my immaturity and lack of patience, Father. Forgive me for often defaulting to irritability instead of patience. Forgive me for often “snapping” at those who make the smallest mistakes or offenses around me. Help me to be better at practicing, embracing, and walking in patience, so that as I walk in this life Your kingdom is not disgraced by my impatient acts towards others.

 

PROMISE (verse 10): This verse gives a very close to the heart promise. We are told that whether we are awake or asleep, we will always live together with Him (Jesus). The promise is that He is always with us, no matter our circumstances or environment. I can always go to Jesus regardless of what is going on around me because He is always with me and I will always live together with Him. Thank You for living this life alongside me. Thank You for always being there for me, even though I have been quite rebellious and immature quite a bit in my life since coming to faith.

 

ATTITUDE (verses 11-13): Although there are quite a bit of “attitude adjustments” that this scripture makes to me, I feel these three verses speaking the loudest to me right now. I do struggle with recognizing those around me who are working hard. Even if they are not doing it the way I want or how quickly I want, they are still working their best to get it done in the way they know how. The reason this speaks loudly to me is because I often criticize my children for how long it takes them to do a chore or maybe that they didn’t do it the way I expected when I never voiced my expectations to them before they started. I should not get frustrated at them or degrade them because at least they are working hard the best way they know how. You tell us to ENCOURAGE one another and to build each other up. You tell us to give RECOGNITION to those who are laboring and to regard them highly in LOVE because of their work. You tell us to maintain PEACE amongst ourselves through it all. I have failed at all of these at times—encouragement, recognition, love, and peace. Help me to be better at all of these when the moments call for it, Father. You have shown me all of these, yet I have struggled quite often with allowing Your overflow to pour out to those around me. Continue to mold me in Your ways, Father, so that I may begin to be a more righteous example and encourager for my family.

 

COMMAND (verse 15): So many amazing commands to follow in this scripture. It’s hard to narrow it down to something for my journal, but I do feel this verse kind of gives an overview command of all of them, which is why I chose it to focus on for my journal. Paul writes that we should ensure no one, including us, repays evil for evil to anyone, but that we are always pursuing what is good for one another and for all. How often have I done things in a way that had selfish motives? How often have I “gotten back” at someone, even my own wife, for the hurts and pains I’ve incurred from them? You tell us to not repay evil for evil, yet I have fallen into this trap so many times in my life. This is an “old habit” from my old identity that I am struggling at times to truly let go of, but I know that through my relationship with You that I am getting better as of late. Help me to be better at embracing this command in my life, Father, so that as I walk in the spirit, it is Your Spirit that is being shown to the world and not the spirit of my flesh.

 

EXAMPLE (verses 8, 16-22): These eight verses really give such a powerful example of how we are to be living out our faith in such a troubled world. First, we are told to wear the armor of faith and love on our chests as well as the helmet of the hope of salvation. Faith, love, and hope are extremely powerful tools in the spiritual arsenal and I need to remember to “equip” these every single day that You give me in this life. The next several verses all give me several “small” tidbits to live by as a mindset adjustment. You tell us to rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in everything, don’t stifle the Spirit, don’t despise prophecies (rather test for righteousness), hold onto what is good, and stay away from evil. If this isn’t a blueprint for walking righteously in this life, then I don’t know what is. Faith, love, hope, rejoicing, praying, giving thanks, embracing the Spirit, discerning & accepting righteous prophecies, embracing at all times what is good and rejecting what is evil. What an amazing example You have given us through Paul’s writings! I only wish I could abide in these 100% of the time in my life, but I am weak and often give into those weaknesses. I know that through You I am strong, but it is a daily struggle of mine to truly let go of things from my past. Continue showing me Your ways and improving me, Father, so that one day I can truly live in this amazing example.

 

*DAILY NOTE: Such a short book of the Bible, but WOW is there so much to learn from the letters Paul wrote to the Thessalonians and this is just the first one! I start 2 Thessalonians tomorrow and I’m looking forward to the great lessons I’m about to learn through all of that. Thank You so much for this first chapter, Father, especially today’s lesson. You have spoken to me about how I am to walk in my faith. You have spoken to me about how I am to be praising and encouraging my children and those around me. You have spoken to me about living in and embracing love and hope in my life while clinging onto what is good; rejoicing and praying through ALL things this life has to offer. Thank You for the amazing lesson today, Father. I pray that I can truly learn from and embrace these deeply into my heart so that I can mature in my faith using all of these lessons and examples.

 

EXPAND TO READ: GENERAL NOTE FOR MY QUIET TIMES


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