Scripture Reading: 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12
John F. Kennedy starts today’s reflection saying, “The supreme reality of our time is our indivisibility as children of God and the common vulnerability of this planet”. We are one and should see ourselves as such.
Paul commended the Thessalonian Christians for being “a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia” (1 Thess. 1:7). In today’s reading, Paul urges them to continue to live lives that “please God” (4:1). As believers, our desire should be to “live a life worthy of the Lord and please Him in every way” (Col. 1:10).
Hebrews 3:13 says encourage one another daily. Richard needed a push, and he got one. He was rock-climbing with his friend Kevin who was the belayer (the one who secures the rope). Exhausted and ready to quit, Richard asked Kevin to lower him to the ground. But Kevin urged him on, saying he had come too far to quit. Dangling in mid-air, Richard decided to keep trying. Amazingly, he was able to reconnect with the rock and complete the climb because of his friend’s encouragement. Beloved, let us be the line that leads to the centre of a circle uniting there, and not like parallel lines, which never join.
In the early church, followers of Jesus encouraged one another to continue to follow their Lord and to show compassion. In a culture riddled with immorality, they passionately appealed to one another to live pure lives (Rom. 12:1; 1 Thess. 4:1). Believers encouraged one another daily, as God prompted them to do so (Acts 13:15). They urged each other to intercede for the body (Rom. 15:30), to help people stay connected to the church (Heb. 10:25), and to love more and more (1 Thess. 4:10).
When was the last time you encouraged someone to keep following Jesus? Who has encouraged you or stirred you to pursue holiness, to keep praying, or to enlarge your love for Jesus and others?1 Thessalonians 5:11 says. “Encourage one another and build each other up.” As I told a friend of the Jehovah’s sect, “Life begins in God, journeys in Him and comes to a close in Him. No one is here on earth, therefore on his or her accord and to live the way it pleases him/her. Our lives must please God through sincere devotion to Him.”
Amos 5:14-15.21-24; Ps 50:7.8-9.10-11.12-13.16bc-17(R.23bc); Accl James 1:18; Gosp Mt 8:23-28-34 WEEKDAY St Elizabeth of Portugal (Opt Mem)
- Let us pray with Thomas A Kempis: “My Jesus, I ask You for the grace to know and do all that You have taught me to gain my salvation. May I imitate Your virtues and profit from your lessons. This is the grace, which I humbly beg of You, my dear Saviour. And I hope to obtain it through your infinite mercy. Amen.
Exercise: Prepare to be part of the Evangelical Outreach holding at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Naval Barracks, Akim IBB Way, Calabar, Cross Rivers State, From the 11th to 13th July 2018.
Meditation: Hebrews 2:11