March 23 - 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4

Saturday, March 23, 2013

March 23 - 2 Thessalonians 1:1-4

Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy, to the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 

We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring.

The opening words are similar to those of Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians, except in verse two, he names the source of grace and peace.

There were days in my life that all I wanted was some peace. I would tear through the day from the moment I woke up until I finally put my head down.  Every moment was filled, many of those moments were highly stressful and nearly all of those moments were spent with people asking me questions or needing me to make decisions or just wanting a piece or part of me.

Those days wove into weeks, months and years and now, as I look back on my journaling from those years, I find that all I ever thought or wrote about was a desire for peace. I prayed harder for peace than I did for anything else.

One day, mom and I were driving somewhere and went past a beautifully groomed cemetery.  The sun was shining, the weather was warm and beautiful, the trees and flowers were waving quietly in the breeze.  I turned to her and said, “It looks so peaceful, doesn't it?”

She didn't say anything right away, but much later she told me that I worried her with that comment.  I assured her that I was only looking at the beauty of the place, there were no metaphysical implications to be taken from my comment.  But, as I look back, her concern for my never-say-stop life was there long before I took on a lot of the responsibilities that sent me into prayer and yearning for peace.

That Jesus Christ was the source of my peace was honestly the only way I got through some of those periods of time.  When I rested, whether at night or on a random Saturday, He offered moments of solitude and quiet and I found restoration.

I am grateful that I knew His peace then; I would never have functioned without that knowledge.

I am also grateful that He has helped me learn about the joy of solitude and peace once again; that I’ve had the opportunity to set aside the perpetual motion of life and enjoy time with Him.  It is His grace and peace; His offering of salvation and new life that can be ours.

He is the author of grace and peace.