Summary: We can praise God for His ability to solve any problem. Problems that go unresolved often cause stress, mistakes and miscommunication. When Paul wrote to the Thessalonians he thanked God for the way He helped them solve their problems of turning away from
Praise God for His Problem-Solving (I Thes 1:5-10)
We can praise God for His ability to solve any problem. Problems that go unresolved often cause stress, mistakes and miscommunication. When Paul wrote to the Thessalonians he thanked God for the way He helped them solve their problems of turning away from idols to serve a living and true God. Let us look at some of the ways God solves problems so we can worship Him more completely.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.
Abraham Maslow, Eating Problems for Breakfast by Tim Hansel, Word Publishing, 1988, p. 54.
Experimental psychologists have long been studying the thinking process in solving problems. Here are some approaches you can use to improve your score as a problem solver:
1. Consider the elements of the problem several times, until a pattern emerges that encompasses them all. This helps you get the total picture before you become lost in details.
2. Don’t make a hasty judgment. Avoid succumbing to the first interpretation that comes to mind.
3. Try rearranging the elements of your problem. This may help uncover a familiar pattern previously masked by an unfamiliar arrangement.
4. Attempt a different approach. A proficient problem solver has learned not to persist in one approach if it’s obviously not working. He or she will jump from one approach to another until a solution is found.
5. Take "time out" when you’re stuck. This will permit you to get away from the problem and perhaps to be able to come back to it with a new perspective.
6. Discuss your problem with others. This will cause you to consider aspects you might otherwise ignore. A listener can serve as a useful feedback source to reveal inconsistency in your reasoning if it exists.
You cannot force a solution to a problem to come to mind. But you can keep your mind open so you can recognize possible paths to solutions when they present themselves.
Bits & Pieces, June 24, 1993, pp. 9-11.
1. PERSECUTION DELIVERANCE - The Thessalonican Christians stood firm when they were persecuted. Paul commended them for their faithful work, steadfast of hope and labor of love that was made possible by the power of God working in and through them. Let us praise God for delivering us from criticism, misunderstanding and adversity brought by evil of all sorts.
2. PURPOSE GIVER - We can praise God, as the Thessalonians did, for the purpose that transcends time, culture and our own limited perspective. Paul wrote, "You turned from idols to serve a living and a true God who is blessed forever." It is a privilege to serve God and know that our labor is not in vain. So many people, 71% of the american workforce, claim that they simply do their jobs merely to receive a pay-check. Consequently, many lack a sense of purpose that gives their lives meaning, fulfillment and a deep sense of satisfaction.
3. PROGRESS ENABLER - We can praise God that He gives us the assurance that He will complete the work that He begins in us as in the days of the Thessalonians. Paul wrote, "The Holy Spirit gave you full assurance that what we said was true." Maturing believers have a continual sense that their lives are getter better not deteriorating. Believers are continually infused with greater hope, love and faith in our great God and His plan for our lives.
4. PRESENT HELP - We can praise God that like the Thessalonians that He is our ever present help in the time of trouble. Though the earth give way and it falls into the heart of the sea. There is a river that makes glad the city of our God." (Psa 46;1,2) The city of Thessalonia was a key port city that afforded Paul an opportunity to herald the gospel out throughout the whole world as He wrote, "You echoed the gospel throughout the whole world." Only the Lord provides us with the best strategies, means and methods to accomplish His great commission purposes. He is never limited by our meager resources.
5. PRODUCER AND CONTROLLER - The Thessalonians realized that they were receiving a gift from God with great joy that was full of proof of its truth. NO wonder there were able to continue through great suffering. As a result they were able to follow the example of Paul in multiplying churches and converts that became effective missionaries throughout the region. Paul wrote, "You became example to all the believers throughout Greece." Let us praise God for the ability to produce new converts, new disciples and new fellowships through the working of our evangelism and disciple-making and teaching ministries.
6. PERSUADER - We can praise God that the Holy Spirit helps persuade people to bring about change, growth and greater Christlikeness in their lives. Paul wrote, "For wherever we go we find people telling us about your faith in God. We didn’t need to tell them about it, for they themselves report how you turned to God and away from idols to serve a living and true God." Only the Holy Spirit can bring people to conversion and beyond. It is God who is at work in people both to will and to do of His good pleasure. Stop feeling that you have to play the role of the persuader since it the word and the Spirit that act as the greater motivator in the world for Christlike maturity.