Thriving Through Thessalonians #6


Thriving Through Thessalonians #6

So Paul, when is this second coming going to happen?

1 Thessalonians 5:1-3 (MSG)
I don't think, friends, that I need to deal with the question of when all this is going to happen. You know as well as I that the day of the Master's coming can't be posted on our calendars. He won't call ahead and make an appointment any more than a burglar would. About the time everybody's walking around complacently, congratulating each other—"We've sure got it made! Now we can take it easy!"—suddenly everything will fall apart. It's going to come as suddenly and inescapably as birth pangs to a pregnant woman.

Jesus himself told us about the folly of setting a date.
Acts 1:7-8 (MSG)
He told them, "You don't get to know the time. Timing is the Father's business. What you'll get is the Holy Spirit.

Live your life expecting the second coming, live by preparing for the event.
                            
You will never figure out when, but you will be given the Holy Spirit.

1 Thessalonians 5:4-8 (MSG)
 But friends, you're not in the dark, so how could you be taken off guard by any of this? You're sons of Light, daughters of Day. We live under wide open skies and know where we stand. So let's not sleepwalk through life like those others. Let's keep our eyes open and be smart. People sleep at night and get drunk at night. But not us! Since we're creatures of Day, let's act like it. Walk out into the daylight sober, dressed up in faith, love, and the hope of salvation.

Sober means thinking clearly.

Faith is trust and confidence in God that leads us to action

Love is treating others as valuable, meeting their needs as opportunity arises,
                              
Hope of Salvation is believing God’s promises about being with Him forever.

Sober to me also means without your head in the sand.
                  
Salvation is found in a right relationship with God.
                  
1 Thessalonians 5:9-11 (MSG)
God didn't set us up for an angry rejection but for salvation by our Master, Jesus Christ. He died for us, a death that triggered life. Whether we're awake with the living or asleep with the dead, we're alive with him! So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you'll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you're already doing this; just keep on doing it.

Follow Jesus in life, Follow Jesus is death. You will travel the same path that the one you’re following has         and that means resurrection.

1 Thessalonians 5:6 (MSG)
So let's not sleepwalk through life like those others.

I see an unintended principle is Paul telling us not to sleepwalk. I say unintended because I really don’t thing Paul had this in mind when we wrote this letter.

Here’s the principle:
          To thrive spiritually you need to have a goal.

Real goals are distinguished from pipe dreams and other flights of fancy because you develop specific measurable achievable and time-bound steps to accomplish your goal.

No goals, no motivation.

Set a short term goal.
1. Write it on paper.
2. Create an action plan to achieve that goal.
3. Put the steps on a calendar.
4. Sit down with a trusted friend and discuss what you are planning to achieve.  
5. Together figure out if the progress towards your goal can be measured.
6. Figure out what tasks you are going to celebrate on your way to your goal.
7. And ask that trusted friend to keep you accountable to working your plan.


1 Thessalonians 5:6 (MSG)
So let's not sleepwalk through life like those others.

I want you to ask God to place a desire in your heart, to help you discover a goal.
Then I want you to live your life with purpose. The purpose is to achieve the Goal. Doing so is going to help you thrive spiritually.


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