Tuesday, December 09, 2008

1 Thessalonians 5: 12-28

Revenge is tempting. When we are hurt by someone in a way that is the cut you to the core type of hurt, it seems that the natural response is to give them a taste of their own medicine – get them back, or at the very least, hope they get something like what they gave.

Today, Paul gives the Thessalonians words to live by. He encourages them to take care of those in need – the sick the weak, and the faint of heart. He then says not to repay evil for evil – not to take revenge. But, not only that we are to give thanks in ALL circumstances. All circumstances?? That’s hard. Life is so full of difficulties and challenges that it is almost impossible to give thanks in those circumstances – and yet that is what we are called to do. I don’t think we have to give thanks FOR the circumstances. I don’t believe God causes bad things to happen but is with us in the midst of those bad things – and that is something to be thankful for - God’s presence, God’s guidance and God’s help and strength to show us how to best deal with those tough times in life. By giving thanks to God even though things aren’t going how we’d like, even though we’ve been hurt and really do want revenge, we will have our hearts changed and encouraged so that no matter what we face we continue to grow closer and closer to the living God.

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