You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed—God is our witness. We were not looking for praise from people, not from you or anyone else, even though as apostles of Christ we could have… Click To Tweet1 Thessalonians 2:5-6
1 Thessalonians 2:5-6 tells us to not seek flattering speech, be careful with greed and do not seek praise from others. Is it just me or do those words hit too close for comfort? The world tells us that we “deserve” so much and with social media constantly highlighting the “best” version of everyone it can be challenging. I want to embrace the idea of being different.
I’ve had the opportunity to create content for business on social media and the same emotions exist there. I find myself looking at the stats and seeking praise, likes and positive feedback. I must remember the purpose behind the content is not personal gain but serving others. When content is self-serving you can feel it and so can others.
So, what can we do in our daily walk to avoid what 1 Thessalonians warns us about?
Start by being anonymous! When you perform an act of random kindness without seeking praise, you’ll be surprised how it makes you feel. There are many ways to do this and not be self-serving. It could be monetary items like large tips or random blessings with money. There are other ways such as flowers, notes of encouragement, or decorations for a neighbor’s mailbox. The key to these items is to give without expectation of gain or praise.
The opposite of greed is contentment and being content is difficult.
Going back to the social media example how many of us have played the “it must be nice” game when scrolling thru feeds? I admit firsthand this is hard for me personally especially when it comes to cars and vacations. Who doesn’t want to drive the latest vehicle or travel to lavish destinations with their picture-perfect family? Here’s a little secret – you won’t find fulfillment in life with better cars, vacations and money. We must shift our minds eye to where we are and the blessings that God has provided. The best advice I can give you when greed starts to attack is to stop and pray. Pray continued blessings to the people that received the blessing and pray for God to open your eyes to the blessings in front of you. People can get into financial turmoil when greed enters the home. Combat it with love to others and contentment for your blessings.
Being anonymous and practicing contentment are not new ideas. They are however not widely accepted in today’s culture. That’s why I’m challenging you to embrace these concepts and be different. Be bold, stand out from the crowd and you will be a constant blessing to others. You will likely find that God begins to increase your blessings as He loves a cheerful giver and when you produce this type of fruit in your life it makes a tremendous impact! You can do this and for the Christmas Story lovers out there “I triple dog dare you”!