“and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you,”
(1 Thessalonians 4:11 NASB)
I had something else entirely in mind for this week. Yet, sometimes the Word simply crashes into us. It’s so odd that I’ve read Thessalonians a dozen or so times and these words have yet to jump out at me. And then they did. A few thoughts.
Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life. English translations vary here. Some give the suggestion of a quiet life surrounded by people we care about, our Church, and our mountains. Some give the suggestion of tranquility, which we might better understand, more or less, as being at peace with God and ourselves. Both are abundantly true! In either case, what I love here is the idea that our ambition in its best form is toward quite and tranquility. Consider that for just a moment.
Attend to you own business. The New King James literally says, “mind your own business”. The dual meaning might only occur in English, but it is valuable. We are at our best when we focus on what we can improve upon not what the forces outside our control are doing. Very similarly, gossip is part of the problem not the solution. Beautiful understanding is it not?
Work with your hands. God is the Creator of all things. He makes something out of nothing. He creates new men and women out of sinful and broken parts. When we build something, cook something, or grow something we are in a profound way honoring Him.