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PASTORS' DAILY DEVOTIONAL
May
15

Quiet Revolution of Humility

Jon Burgess

Scripture

10Indeed, you already show your love for all the believersthroughout Macedonia. Even so, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you to love them even more.11Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands, just as we instructed you before.12Then people who are not believers will respect the way you live, and you will not need to depend on others. 1 Thessalonians 4:10-12

Observation

This is not how I saw it playing out. When Jesus called His disciples to go into all the world preaching the Gospel and making disciples I saw it more happening with great noise! I pictured more wind then whisper, more trumpets than timbrels, more storm then streams, more quickly and suddenly then quietly and subtly. When Paul commands the church in Thessalonica to "make it your goal to live a quiet life" I had to do a double take. "Minding your own business and working with your hands" does not sound like an effective way to spread the Gospel. It certainly doesn't sound very exciting. "The Few, The Proud, The Brave." Now, that's exciting. "The quiet, the focused, the employed, the punctual." It lacks it a little "something - something" doesn't it? And yet, this is not an idea, this is a command from the Lord on how we are to carry out our Christian faith until Jesus returns for us. Something will shift in the public perception of Christians when we stop drawing attention to ourselves and we start drawing attention through hard work that benefits those around us.

Application

Being a generally loud person who likes an exciting ad campaign I wrestled with these verses. Then The Holy Spirit reminded of the Prophet Jeremiah's instructions to the exiles in Babylon. This was not their home, but they were not to keep their bags packed or rail against their neighbors. In fact, they were to the opposite of what they felt like doing in that pagan land. They were to serve them! 5“Build homes, and plan to stay. Plant gardens, and eat the food they produce. 6Marry and have children. Then find spouses for them so that you may have many grandchildren. Multiply! Do not dwindle away! 7And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.”(Jeremiah 29:5-11) This is exactly what the Apostle Paul was getting at. Make an impression on your neighbors through hard work, solid families, real relationships. The world could care less about our epic worship songs and our inspiring sermons. What will cause a shift in the current cultural perception of the irrelevance of The Church? Being the hardest working most responsible employee in the office is way to catch the attention of the unbeliever. Having a faithful marriage and good kids is way to catch the attention of our neighbors. Rather then "depending on others" because of debt, irresponsibility, or foolish choices made in the name of faith, we will invest into others through what God has blessed us with! Wouldn't it be great if the latest headlines about the church looked more like what Paul and Jeremiah describe then the latest moral failure, financial mishandling, or odd and bombastic declaration?

Prayer

At the beginning of this year, You gave me a phrase that I knew would take a year to unpack. You called me to a "Quiet Revolution of Humility". These versesthis morning bring into sharp focus and greatest clarity exactly what You are talking about. It's not about the hard sell, the quick fix, the catchy phrase, the perfect song. It's about how we are consistently and consciously living out our Christian faith in the world around us. People won'tknow whats happening until it's already happened. The news won't be able to mock it, man won't be able to control it, market it or package it because the revolution of humility will happen one neighbor, one co-worker, one student, one spouse at a time! There will only be one name on everyone's lips- Jesus. It's You that will do this through our simple faithlived out on a daily basis. I don't want to miss this Lord. While looking for the next thing I don't want to miss the big thing You are doing in quiet ways all around me!


Devotions for May 15

1 Chronicles 25,26,27
1 Thessalonians 4

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