Daily D – 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort you and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say. 2 THESSALONIANS 2:16-17 (NLT)
I was reminded recently of the limits of my strength. I hit my tiny toe and watched it swell and turn purple. Putting on socks now requires extra care. A few weeks ago, I received a crown that involved uncomfortable hours with two other people’s hands in my mouth with picks and drills and other tools of torture. A couple of days ago, my back made me shout when I twisted the wrong way. There are always reminders to tell us we are not as strong as we think we are.
What if you had all the strength you needed for all you wanted to accomplish? What would you attempt if you knew you would have everything you need to get the job done?
I worked with a group recently who crafted a beautiful vision statement about where they believe God is taking them in the future. The statement is longer than most and beautifully crafted. It is truly inspirational. There is so much to it that it will not easily fit on a post-card size piece of mail. There are statements that can be excised and used fruitfully to communicate the vision in bite-size chunks. The full statement provides a deep well of vision language to draw from again and again.
What if you take guidance from that group’s work for your life today? What if you made a list of all the things you could do today that would honor God and serve others if he provided the resources you need? What would go on the list? What work would you lean into? What words would fill your mind and find expression in your communication?
Take a look at today’s calendar. What strength do you need for each meeting or engagement? What words do you need to edify and encourage those you will encounter? What open-ended questions do you need to ask to give other people room to ponder and pursue God’s best for all concerned?
Begin preparing for those activities. Begin banking those words. Ask God for the strength he promises for activities and communication that honors him and serves others.
This is an exercise you can repeat day after day with ever-greater benefit. God will use you to spread his love and grace, comfort and hope, and strength for all you do and say. This is an offer you should never refuse.
I will trust God for the strength I need for everything before me today.
Our Father, I see what is on my calendar and to-do list. You see everything I cannot. Prepare me today for the work before me. Empower me for every activity and conversation. I want each engagement to honor you and serve others. I want to be a super-spreader of your love and grace, your comfort and hope, and your limitless strength. Thank you for these wonderful gifts. Amen.
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Isaiah 30:18 Therefore the LORD is waiting to show you mercy, and is rising up to show you compassion, for the LORD is a just God. All who wait patiently for him are happy. (CSB)
Matthew 14:29 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter answered him, “command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus. (CSB)
Matthew 14:19, 20 Then he commanded the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves and the two fish, looking up to heaven, he blessed them. He broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. Everyone ate and was satisfied. They picked up twelve baskets full of leftover pieces. (CSB)