Thursday, June 26, 2008

SOAP Study - 6/26/08 (1 Thess 1:1-3)

I'm continuing with the passage from yesterday.


1 Thessalonians 1:1-3

vs. 1 "We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers."
vs. 3 "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."



"You are continually on our mind when we pray, and we thank God for you and what you do. When we pray for you we constantly remember how your faith is evidenced through the things you do, how you go out of your way to do things for others because you love them, and how you continually endure hardships because you have a confident expectation of the future found in Christ."

What is God saying?

What prompts us to do what we do. It is interesting to note the three things that are done: work, labor, endure. Work, it has to be done if we are ever going to accomplish something. Work can be from a small task to a large task. Work doesn't necessarily have to hurt. Labor is more painful. Labor is work that causes discomfort. It is easy to give up on our work when it becomes a little uncomfortable. This is where endurance comes in. Work is never done without a reason. It is the end product that keeps us at what we are doing even when the work becomes labor. The final result helps us endure.

What is our job (our purpose)? We are to do two things. First, become more like Christ and second, help others become more like Him. This requires work that can become labor, but it is the end product that helps us endure. What is the end product? Spending eternity with our Heavenly Father.

Work, labor and endurance come from faith, love and hope. Gee, those sound real familiar. Our faith is what motivates us to do God's will. Our love keeps us going from one person to the next. Our hope in Christ keeps us at it even when we are rejected over and over again.

What is God saying to me?

Work might be becoming labor here shortly. We as a church are going through a time of metamorphoses. With change comes a slew of uncomfortable situations. Some of these make you want to go hide your head under a rock and never come out, but I need to keep the end result in sight. We are going to be encouraging the people of Kingman Christian Church to take serious the purpose for which God has created them. If we can inspire people to grow in their relationship with Christ and contribute to the growth of the Kingdom then it is all worth it. More people will come to know Jesus and develop a personal relationship with Him ultimately spending eternity with Him.


This is what I need to be focusing on. My work is done because of my faith in Christ. I work for those whom I love which is never easy because we are talking about people (especially teenagers ;P). My hope in seeing them in heaven keeps me at it even when it gets hard.

How do I do this. Again, I think it comes through spending time with God, getting to know him, and it comes from praying for those who I am trying to reach.


God, help me overcome the selfish nature I am constantly fighting against. Give me a passion for you and for others. Motivate me through my growing faith, love and hope. Make something of my life. Use me in helping people see the truth. Help me be an instrument of change in people's lives. Thank you God for hearing my prayer.

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