“[As a child] Jesus carried into His labor cheerfulness and tact.
It requires much patience and spirituality to bring Bible religion into the home life and into the workshop, to bear the strain of worldly business, and yet keep the eye single to the glory of God. This is where Christ was a helper. He was never so full of worldly care as to have no time or thought for heavenly things. Often He expressed the gladness of His heart by singing psalms and heavenly songs. Often the dwellers in Nazareth heard His voice raised in praise and thanksgiving to God. He held communion with heaven in song; and as His companions complained of weariness from labor, they were cheered by the sweet melody from His lips. His praise seemed to banish the evil angels, and, like incense, fill the place with fragrance. The minds of His hearers were carried away from their earthly exile, to the heavenly home.”-Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 73.
“Nothing tends more to promote health of body and of soul than does a spirit of gratitude and praise. It is a positive duty to resist melancholy, discontented thoughts and feelings-as much a duty as it is to pray.”-Ellen G. White, The Ministry of Healing, p. 251.
- As a class, go over your answers to Wednesday’s final question. Look at it in two ways: what has been Ellen White’s impact on our church as a whole, and how has her ministry impacted our lives as individuals?
- Dwell more on this idea of how our culture’s attitude toward authority affects our attitude toward authority in the church. Does our culture incite us to disrespect authority or to pay too much deference to it? How can we strike the right balance?
- How can your local church do a better job of mentoring new believers in character growth? What kind of spiritual leadership training is needed?
Summary: In this week’s passage (1 Thess. 5:12-27) Paul addresses a variety of issues, but he is particularly focused on the spiritual quality of local church life. Believers at the local level are to mentor each other and be joyful and thankful. They are also to be open to new truth, particularly prophetic truth, yet careful and thoughtful in their evaluation of new ideas. Above all else, Paul calls for complete submission to God in every area of personal life with an eye toward the return of Jesus.