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17/08/2021 03:00 - 18/08/2021 02:00

“My Father is still working, and I also am working - John 5:17 (NIV). 

The term “idle and disorderly” was introduced by the British colonialists to contain those whose conduct they considered a threat to the existence of the ruling class. People who fall in that category include: those found wandering aimlessly, gathering alms, playing games of chance in public places, loitering for immoral purposes, etc. Upon conviction one can be subject to a prohibitive fine or imprisonment up to seven years.

For these British rulers the “idle and disorderly” were considered as a nuisance, deserving to be cleared; though in truth, for many their aimlessness was a result of being deprived of their livelihood. Think of a time when people used to live in communities where they woke up to roles and duties specified for every individual. This is how most of our African societies used to function before colonialism arrived to upset the social order.

Writing to the church in Thessalonica, the Apostle Paul too, decries being “idle and disorderly” but for a different reason. His concern was not to secure himself and a group of nobles a genteel life safe from being disturbed by the “riff ruff” ; rather, to see everyone of us is gainfully employed.

“In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers and sisters, to keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching you received from us” (2 Thessalonians 3:6). When people are “Idle and disorderly” Paul noted they tended to become “busybodies. Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat” (vv 11-12).

It has been noted that King David took a man’s wife because he, Uriah, was at war, while David was slackening back home, with a lot of time on his hand (2 Samuel 11). Paul’s admonition against idleness is actually for our good. Aside from enabling us earn a living, it also saves us from all those temptations and distractions that come as a result of not being occupied in some productive pursuit.

Today, thank God if you have a task to keep you fully motivated and engaged through the day, for that is how the Lord intended to be. And where you may not, pray that you soon discover and engage in that task, so consuming that you have no time for being “idle and disorderly”!

Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, I am grateful for the work you have given to me to keep me fully occupied and likewise pray that all believers may enjoy the same, for work is a form of worship to you, this I pray in Jesus’s name!

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    "The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands” (Acts 17:24)

    When in his missionary journey the Apostle Paul ventured into the city of Athens he was struck by two things. First, the Athenians spent most of the day doing nothing but talking about the latest ideas (Acts 17:21). In spite of that they could not figure out who the great God is and his plan for their salvation.

    Secondly, Paul noticed Athens was filled with temples and statutes all over. In fact he came across one altar marked with an inscription to an “unknown god” (verse 23). The Athenians were a very religious people, searching God but with no idea of his plans for salvation through Jesus.
    The experience of Paul travelling through Athens could be the same with any of us visiting our modern cities. It is easy to find folks arguing about where truth can be found on social media almost all day. And then also one can find temples of all nature rising across the city. This is usually where they have assigned and restricted God as folks go about their lives.

    One thing Paul reminded the Athenians is that in spite of all their great arguments and temples the truth was actually not far from them. “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundary of their lands. God did this so that they should seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any of us” (Acts 17:27-28).

    Today, you may find yourself in a situation similar to that of the Athenians, where you are searching for the truth, yet it is so close to you. “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me” (Revelation 3:20).

    Prayer for today: Lord Father in heaven, today I pray in the blessed name of Jesus, to know and share the truth of your salvation like Paul did for you are not far from any who truly desires to know you, this I pray in Jesus’ name!