Pause

Understand—through the stillness.
Act—out of the stillness.
Conquer—in the stillness.

Dag Hammarskjöld in Markings (1964)

Still your body, mind, and soul. In the stillness, can you sense God’s hope waiting for you?

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Listen

But we always must thank God for you, brothers and sisters who are loved by God. This is because he chose you from the beginning to be the first crop of the harvest. This brought salvation, through your dedication to God by the Spirit and through your belief in the truth.

2 Thessalonians 2:13

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Think

Did you notice how one-sided the verbs are in today’s scripture? Almost all the action lies on the divine side: it is the Lord who loves, God who chose, and the Spirit who brings salvation. The main work of humans is to put our "belief in the truth." All the Thessalonians can do is to accept the reality of a God who acts for their good.

The knowledge that God takes the initiative is tremendously freeing. God has taken the first step — the Lord loves you, God chose you, and the Spirit is even now bringing you salvation. God longs to see this divine initiative realized in your life. All that you need to do is to trust that God will do what God said God will do.

It’s a bit like the team-building activity called a “trust fall,” in which a person deliberately allows themselves to fall, trusting that another person is ready to catch them. God has prepared everything, and God stands ready — do you trust enough to fall into the hope God has promised you?

Andrew Garnett

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Pray

God, thank you for taking the first step in our relationship. Give me the confidence to put my faith in this truth. Amen.

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Go

Go today to walk with a God who has been good in the past, who is faithful in the present, and who has prepared for you a future of overwhelming hope.

Andrew Garnett

Andrew Garnett is a minister at Forest Hills Baptist Church in Raleigh, NC. He enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter, hiking, visiting historical sites, and playing board games — and the more complicated the board game, the better!

24 Preludes, Op. 28: No 4 In E Minor

Garry Bailey

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