It’s been suggested that, give-or-take, we have 120 waking hours available each week for work, family and leisure time. If you’re a Christian, you might spend up to 10 of those hours a week at church, but probably not much more. That leaves 110 hours per week that we might call our “everyday lives”. Our time at work and our time with our families and friends.
Most Christians have a sense that we ought to be using those 110 hours to serve God, and that our worship shouldn’t just be confined to times when we’re with our church. But it’s not always obvious how we should be using that time. Sometimes God can feel pretty distant from our daily lives. Often we just need a reminder about what’s important.
So for the next couple of weeks at Gospel in the City, we’re going to be thinking about how we can please God in our everyday lives – our personal lives and our work lives. We’ll be thinking about how Christian personal relationships and attitudes to work can reflect the distinctive character of the loving God we worship.
We’re going to be looking at a couple of short sections from one of the Apostle Paul’s first letters, to a group of Christians in the city of Thessalonica in Greece. After a very short visit, a number of the Thessalonians have become Christians. But Paul had barely begun to take them through the basics of the Christian life before he’s forced to leave the city because of opposition to his message. So Paul writes to tell them how, since they’ve “turned from idols to serve the living and true God and to wait for his Son from heaven”¹, they can now live to please God.
If you’re not a Christian we think this will be a good chance to see what kind of God we worship by seeing the sort of life he wants us to have. A chance to see things from the inside, so to speak. And if you’re a Christian, we hope you’ll be encouraged and equipped to live to please God in your everyday life.
9th Nov: How to please God in our personal lives (1 Thessalonians 4:1-8)
16th Nov: How to please God in our working lives (1 Thessalonians 4:9-13)
Lee Campbell, who serves as pastor of Strandtown Baptist Church in Belfast, will be helping us think through these passages.
Wednesday lunchtimes, 1:10-1:40pm, upstairs in Caffe Nero on Fountain Street (1 min from City Hall). Sandwiches available (suggested donation: £3).
¹ 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10