Friday, December 15, 2006

Devotional Thoughts: How we ought to live - the quiet life

Let's take a look at 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12.

Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.

I suppose it is passages like this that have led to the "Protestant work ethic?"

One wonders if the Apostle Paul were around today, would he have some sympathy for the Libertarian political party?

Now, I don't think when Paul said we should mind our own business that we ignore what is happening around us. For instance, as we live our life, we may come across someone who has a need and at that point, Jesus' Parable of the Good Samaritan should leap to our minds and we should respond.

Also, we should note, Paul mentioned, win the respect of outsiders. Paul used the word outsiders on three other occasions. Therefore, as Christians we do live within a distinct minority community but we don't retreat from the society at large. We still interact with the rest of the world and it should be our goal to interact in a way that wins respect. Now, if in doing good deeds and loving people and telling about Jesus in a honorable way fails to garner respect then we have done our best and must leave the rest in the hands of God.

Lord, help me to live in a way that reveals you to those around me. Thank you that I have a job that provides for my needs. Help me to use some of that provision for others who have needs. Help me to be wise in how I treat people outside the family of faith. Please guide me today. Amen!

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