Our Bible verse for today: “Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.” 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Be grateful for the life you have.”
I once knew a young man who was a very talented singer, songwriter, and musician. He played multiple instruments including the guitar, piano, and drums, and he had a great voice. As a teenager and young man he was deeply involved in the music ministry of the church, and he seemed destined to be a youth pastor or worship leader.
However, he had dreams of fame and fortune. He wanted to be a professional Christian musician making records and performing concerts in large arenas. And in truth, he was probably good enough to do that. But, for various reasons, he was unable to break into the Christian recording industry, so in frustration he crossed over to the dark side. He moved to Hollywood and got involved in the secular music scene. There he did have some success. He became a session musician and found work playing and singing backup for non-Christian recording artists. He even wrote and performed the theme song for major movie. But he also got sucked into the drugs and alcohol that is so prevalent in that world. Long story short, I ended up performing his funeral when he was only thirty-two years old.
It’s typical of human nature for us to glorify and place on a pedestal people like actors, musicians, and athletes. We make celebrities out of them, pay them ridiculous amounts of money, treat them as if they are some higher life form than the rest of us, and secretly, many of us long to be like them. And yes, we do that in the Christian community too. We have our share of celebrity pastors and authors and musicians and we put them up on a pedestal. But that can often leave everyone else feeling substandard or inadequate, as if our lives don’t measure up.
The fact is that God doesn’t call us to be celebrities. Jesus is the only celebrity in Christianity. The overwhelming majority of Christians are called by God to be butchers, bakers, and candlestick makers. We are teachers and accountants and police officers and store clerks and moms and dads and aunts and uncles and good neighbors. God wants us to be regular people living regular lives, honoring Him and blessing others. Oh sure, there are some who will write best-selling books or fill concert halls, but that’s the exception and it’s not what God intends for most of us. And also, that kind of life brings with it a whole host of its own unique and difficult challenges that most of us wouldn’t want if we did have it.
Your life is important and it matters exactly the way it is. Just focus on being the best you that God has called you to be at this time in your life. Be happy with the life that you have.