Daily Devotion - November 13, 2020 - Warning about Idleness

Pastor: Connie Belmore

Daily Devotion – November 13, 2020
Reading
: 2 Thessalonians 3
Weekly Theme: See – Judge – Act
Today: Warning about Idleness

As we continue this week with the theme of “See—Judge—Act , we also continue in our reading with Paul’s letters to the Thessalonians. Yesterday we spent time focusing on the final greetings in the first letter. Today we turn our attention to Paul's words of advice about prayer followed by a warning against the dangers of idleness. Most of us are familiar with the expression, “Idleness is the devil’s workshop”. The older I get, the more I understand that sitting around and doing nothing, truly is not a good thing to do physically, mentally, or spiritually. Paul elaborates on what happens when we pray and conversely, what happens when we sit idly by and do nothing.

Praying keeps us focused on the right things such as reading about and looking and listening for the message of God and then sharing that message with others. Praying keeps us aware of our associates, those people with whom we spend time. We should be in prayer for ALL people to come into relationship with Christ but we need to pray God will guide us to Godly people for discipleship and to people who do not have faith to evangelize. We also should pray that God will provide us with the right words and actions to say and do when we are around those who do not have faith.

Paul then associates idleness with disruption, advising the Church of Thessalonica to work hard so that we will not to be a burden to anyone. Paul goes on to explain that helping one another out and providing for others is not a bad thing, but it is better to work hard to set an example for others to imitate. Sitting around and doing nothing leads to disruptive behaviors such as sticking your nose in other people’s business. It also eventually causes hard feelings when people are not carrying their share of the workload. Those people that are idle busy bodies are not people with whom we should hang out; yet Paul warns against shunning them. Instead he recommends that these people should be warned as a fellow believer. When someone is idle, and their only busy-ness is sticking their nose in the affairs of others and being disruptive, it is our responsibility to warn them that idleness is not good for a community of believers. This is our responsibility to the body of Christ and is our responsibility to the believer who has become idle. Everyone should pull their weight, stay busy furthering the kingdom and praying to God rather than being a distraction.

Accountability is not always easy, but it is part of the discipleship process and is certainly necessary to avoid idleness and disruptive behaviors in the church. If we care about the souls of all people, then we do need to pray hard that God will send us to those who have yet to receive and accept God’s grace and to be bold and warn believers who are idle and disruptive when it comes to the mission of kingdom building.

Dear God, thank you for lessons learned in the writings of Paul to the people of Thessalonica. Help us to stay busy praying and working hard to provide for ourselves. Help us to walk away from unhealthy conversations and from idle and deceptive people who stand in the way of kingdom (or kin-dom) building. Give us all we need to warn these people of the danger of idle and disruptive behavior but to do so in Christian love so that in all we do and say as believers we glorify your name and further your kingdom. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

 

 
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