As I sit in God’s presence this morning with His Word open before me, this light emanates from 1 Thessalonians 1:3 — faith produces work, love prompts labor, and hope inspires endurance.
What is God producing, prompting, inspiring in you? What motives — other than faith and love —must you surrender? What work or labor, not prompted by Him, do you need to abandon to make room for the real thing? Where do you need a fresh infusion of hope to endure regardless of the circumstances?
These are the questions I am asking myself this morning as I sit in His presence in the Light.
Wisdom from a Friend
I shared these thoughts with a few trusted friends, knowing they would stand for me and with me in prayer. Steve Ivaska responded, saying he is in awe of how God weaves people, circumstances, and scripture passages together as part of His master plan and is grateful for the reminder of truth. He gave me permission to share the words he penned on December 10, 2010, less than a month after retiring, just as he was beginning to explore the possibilities for living out his mission statement of “Building Men with Christ-Centered Priorities.”
We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Thessalonians 1:2-3 NIV).
As I think about my personal objectives and mission, I need to see them unfolding as a “work produced by faith.” I cannot see what lies ahead clearly or the outcome. It is and will continue to be a “journey of faith.”
Second, it is to be a “labor prompted by love.” I need to keep this thought front and center…that my motivation needs to be solely that of love: for Christ, my family, and the men whose lives I seek to impact. This isn’t “about me.” It’s not about what I’m doing to fulfill my passion or use my talents or finding something meaningful to do with the rest of my life. It about the two great commandments: love for my God…with heart, soul, and mind…and love for others (Matthew 22:37-39), using the time, talent and treasures he has entrusted me with.
Third, I must not lose sight that this is a “race of endurance.” As I run the race and encounter the challenges within, I must not lose sight that the run is inspired by my hope in Christ, the Author and Perfecter of my faith, who for the joy set before him, endured the cross, to make possible my salvation and the opportunities now in front of me.
God has already begun to answer my questions.
TAKE IT AND RUN WITH IT
- Now what about you? What motives — other than faith and love —must you surrender?
- What work or labor, not prompted by Him, do you need to abandon to make room for the real thing?
- Where do you need a fresh infusion of hope to endure regardless of the circumstances?
Please feel free to share your thoughts to encourage others. Click on the speech bubble above to leave a reply…