May 24, 2021
And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. 1 Thessalonians 5:14 ESV
In these closing comments of Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians, he exhorts the church to be alert and ready for Christ’s imminent return. For Paul, there are two aspects of being vigilant and prepared: first, we address our conduct; secondly, that of fellow believers. As pertains to our affairs, we are to refrain from obsessions with the end times and focus on the work that God has prepared for us to do. And we are to conduct our lives in a manner worthy of children of the light (verse 5-6), refraining from the darkened ways of a lost world that seeks immediate pleasures without regard for their consequences (verse 7). As pertains to other believers, we should lovingly and humbly admonish those who are idle in their faith journey and reach out to those who are struggling with life’s challenges—all the while exercising patience with one another. It is a sound game plan that will ready children of the light for Christ’s return.
Father God, grant us your grace to focus on the here and now, that we would avoid distractions associated with the signs of the time and stay on course with your kingdom work—all the while caring for one another. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling