In his first letter to the Thessalonians, Paul gives a recipe for influential leadership that includes humility and hope. And the Thessalonians had hope, along with faith and love, in droves (1 Thess 1:2-3).
But, in a matter of months, they lost hope. Affliction and persecution and besetting sin wore them down, and they had grown weary in doing good.
Can you relate?
Hope is slippery, and this fallen world constantly threatens our grip on it.
The definition of marriage is in question. Religious liberty could be threatened. School shootings become routine. Horrific infanticide takes place in unaccountable clinics. Chemical weapons endanger world peace. Government shutdowns inflame disgruntlement.
Through it all, we try to do good. We love our neighbors, we support the community, and we preach Christ and him crucified.
But it gets wearying.
You’re not alone.
The Relentless Fight blog recently published an article I wrote about 2 Thessalonians called “Regaining Hope.” In the article, I reflect on what Paul might say today to any of us in danger of losing hope.