Thursday, July 26, 2012

Scripture Meditation: 1Thess. 2:1-6

"My friends, you know that our time with you wasn't wasted. As you remember, we had been mistreated and insulted at Philippi. But God gave us the courage to tell you the good news about him, even though many people caused us trouble. We didn't have any hidden motives when we won you over, and we didn't try to fool or trick anyone. God was pleased to trust us with his message. We didn't speak to please people, but to please God who knows our motives. You also know that we didn't try to flatter anyone. God himself knows that what we did wasn't a cover-up for greed. We were not trying to get you or anyone else to praise us." (1Thess. 2:1-6, CEV)

Here are some things we can take away from this passage:
1. Know that the time we expend for Jesus (whether in service, in devotion, in persecution, in obedience, in sacrifice, etc) is never a waste!
2. There may be times (or have been) times where we will experience discomfort in our service for Jesus, but God can and will give us courage to keep going forward with the Gospel despite the hardships.
3. Check our motives. Why are you truly serving, or in devotion, or in ministry, or obeying, or sacrificing, and so on? Can you say like Paul says here that you have no hidden motives for selfish personal gain?
4. Desire and pursue God to be pleased to entrust us with His Message.
5. Don't do whatever it is you may do to please people, but to purely please God!
6. Constantly align our motives to God's motives--which is His Gospel being presented in every form and fashion!
7. Do not desire nor seek recognition or praise for whatever it is you may do for Jesus; and be sure that God's knows (both: if we are, and how we are).

Continue to love and serve in excellence in all you do unto our Lord Jesus!


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Scripture Meditation: Acts 3:11-12, 16

While the healed man clung to Peter and John, all the people rushed toward them at Solomon’s Porch, completely amazed. Seeing this, Peter addressed the people: “You Israelites, why are you amazed at this? Why are you staring at us as if we made him walk by our own power or piety?....His name itself has made this man strong. That is, because of faith in Jesus’ name, God has strengthened this man whom you see and know. The faith that comes through Jesus gave him complete health right before your eyes. (Acts 3:11-12, 16, CEB)

Here are some things we can take away from this passage
1. Oftentimes people--whether innocently or purposely--will misdirectly cling to or rush, in amazement, to other people, ministries, churches, and so forth as if they're the source of whatever they received (v. 11)
2. Knowing this, we have a duty to graciously correct their misdirection (v. 12).
3. We also have to humbly remind ourselves that it is not by our words, our service, our concepts, nor the event that brings about the individual blessings (v. 12).
4. The name of Jesus going forth in the service and ministries is the source of whatever blessing someone receives (v. 16).
5. Our individual faith in Jesus is where we find strength to do whatever we do, especially when we get weary or it gets hard; and our individual and collective declaration of faith in Jesus will offer strength to others (v. 16).

Be encouraged, and continue to love and serve in excellence unto our Lord Jesus!