1 Thessalonians 3:7 “So we have been greatly encouraged in the midst of our troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives us new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord.” Last night a friend called to ask for some advice. “Work is great, but I’ve always wanted to jump out on my own. I have this startup idea, but I feel like God might be telling me the time is not right. What should I do? What if I don’t do it now and someone else takes the idea and makes it a big company?” I told him a few stories from my life and from scripture that outlined why he should always listen to God. “I believe God is the ultimate dreamer, and we’re made in his image. So it’s our responsibility to dream big. But it’s only when we show God that He’s more important than our dreams, that He sees our heart in the right place and blesses us with those dreams. The way to a billion dollar company is to not care about the billion dollar company at all in relation to God.” I advised him to fast and pray, and he resisted. “I love my food. That’s really hard to do for me.” “Yes that’s the point! You can never outgive God. I dare you to see if He doesn’t totally blow you away when you put Him above your deepest desires.” “Yes I get it… but sometimes I’m stubborn.” “That’s fine bro. God still loves you and wants the promised land for you. But it might take 40 years of wandering in the desert to get there. It’s not punishment so much as love… cause blessing us when we’re not ready can totally kill us.” We hung up the phone and honestly I wasn’t sure how he’d land on it. But this morning I felt God lead me to 1 Thessalonians 3. Paul had similar concerns about the church there, but had heard reports back from Timothy that they were thriving, and that their faith was carrying them through. Today I feel like God calling me to call out the gold in this friend, and to speak truth that his faith will also carry him through. Lord, thank you for protecting me and my friends. Thank you that you love us and want the promised land for us. I submit my will to yours today, and declare that all I need is you. Thank you also for protecting my father who has a doctor’s appointment at 2pm. We look forward to good news. In Jesus’ name, Amen.