Thessalonians – Living Forward…live Jesus’ way.
If you had a few last words to tell your family before you passed on from this life to the next, what would you say? When you close your letters, emails or messages of communication to those you might not see again, what would you say? If you truly love them, what God’s best for them, you would probably say what Paul said to the believers in Thessalonica. This passage is a blessing of encouragement with ways to live Jesus, His way, with unconditional love as a never ending circle that delivers peace and joy no matter what our circumstances might be. Take joy in reading and rereading from someone who really cares, who points us to live Jesus!
1 Thessalonians 5, The Message
The Way He Wants You to Live
12-13 And now, friends, we ask you to honor those leaders who work so hard for you, who have been given the responsibility of urging and guiding you along in your obedience. Overwhelm them with appreciation and love!
13-15 Get along among yourselves, each of you doing your part. Our counsel is that you warn the freeloaders to get a move on. Gently encourage the stragglers, and reach out for the exhausted, pulling them to their feet. Be patient with each person, attentive to individual needs. And be careful that when you get on each other’s nerves you don’t snap at each other. Look for the best in each other, and always do your best to bring it out.
16-18 Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live.
19-22 Don’t suppress the Spirit, and don’t stifle those who have a word from the Master. On the other hand, don’t be gullible. Check out everything, and keep only what’s good. Throw out anything tainted with evil.
23-24 May God himself, the God who makes everything holy and whole, make you holy and whole, put you together—spirit, soul, and body—and keep you fit for the coming of our Master, Jesus Christ. The One who called you is completely dependable. If he said it, he’ll do it!
25-27 Friends, keep up your prayers for us. Greet all the followers of Jesus there with a holy embrace. And make sure this letter gets read to all the brothers and sisters. Don’t leave anyone out.
28 The amazing grace of Jesus Christ be with you!
–Am I living Jesus, in His ways? How?
–Do I embrace the stragglers with patience and love?
–Am I cheerful, no matter what?
–Am I grieving the Holy Spirit by ignoring His promptings to me?
–Am I allowing God to transform me? To keep me fit for His company and coming?
–Am I praying God’s blessings on others? Am I leaving anyone out of those prayers?
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for Your salvation and Your grace that makes us holy before you. Transform me. Change me. Make me into all You intended for me to be. I’m Yours. Help me not to worry about others so much but leave them in Your hands. May Your Holy Spirit guide me, tell me when to speak and when to be silent. When it’s time to speak, Lord, give me Your Words. I want to live You. In Jesus Name, Amen.
And I’m singing…
Living for Jesus, a life that is true,
Striving to please Him in all that I do;
Yielding allegiance, glad-hearted and free,
This is the pathway of blessing for me.
O Jesus, Lord and Savior, I give myself to Thee,
For Thou, in Thy atonement, didst give Thyself for me;
I own no other Master, my heart shall be Thy throne;
My life I give, henceforth to live, O Christ, for Thee alone.