QT – I Thessalonians 2

Vs. 4, “On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel…”  We just read of the good things that came from the Thessalonica church, and now we read the picture of an ideal pastor/leader.  We see how Paul put such an emphasis on spiritual growth for the young Christians.  Though Paul would travel to many regions, we see his incredible faithfulness & love for each of the churches.  Though trials & testing would come (vs. 4b), Paul would not succomb to pleasing the world.  We also see Paul refering to his relationship with them as a mother (vs. 7-8), a father (vs. 9-16), and a brother (vs. 17-20).
Regarding application…Real Humility.  Vs. 6, “We were not looking for praise from men, not from you or anyone else.”  It’s only natural to want to be recognized for our achievements.  It boosts our self-esteem and helps us to feel like we are needed & appreciated.  But on the flipside…we also have the danger of getting a “Big Head”.  We can become overconfident, vain, and conceited.  I think real humility is understanding that we have no rights to anything…we are now slaves to righteousness.  Whatever praises we get from this world should not be given to us in the first place.  All praise, glory & honor comes to the Lord Most High.  He is the wind beneath our wings.  Real humility is realizing that we don’t need to rely on the praises & acknowledgement from others to keep us going in our life.  The only person(s) we should be worried about is God, Jesus & the Holy Spirit.

Question: How does one get to be vain & conceited?  We are very quick to envy those who seemingly have it all.  The tall handsome athletic guy, the beautiful girl who is noticed by all and very popular at school.  We wonder what our lives would be like if we could be in their shoes.  But in reality…you should be thanking God that you don’t have that burden to live up to.  When a boy or girl grow up in this society with this envious characteristics…it’s a constant battle for them to remain humble.  People who have it all are always given the breaks, always loved by the masses, always gets the attention….but with that…comes all the expectations from others.  If you are good-looking you are going to be pressured to hangout with the popular (worldly) crowd.  But if you are on the chess team with white tape holding your black-rimmed spectalces together…not many people are even going to notice you…much less put all these expectations on you.The praises of men are nothing compared to the praises of God!  What a moment it will be if we can come before our Lord to hear him say, “Well done, Good & faithful son/daughter!”  That’s the praise we should all want to hear one day!  If God does indeed tell us this….then there is a very high chance you will live this life not getting the praises & attention you would like.  Remember…this short life on earth is only temporary….