To This End Resolve

 

Resolve.

Determination. A stand. Setting your face like flint and not moving.

 

At the beginning of each year, like most people, we obey the tradition of creating resolutions. We reflect on the past year and resolve to improve ourselves in the next. People share their 2013 resolutions with me, but I know as well as they–“resolutions” rarely survive past February. They are quickly made and quickly dropped. Obviously the reward isn’t worth the endurance. Still, if something were worth resolve, could I not endure? If something fed resolve, could I not keep on? If a great motive existed, wouldn’t I want resolve? Unfortunately, our “make and drop” track record hardly encourages anyone to keep on. I have to wonder,

 

Is anything even worth resolve? What keeps resolve going? Why care? Why fight for it?

 

I looked to God’s Word for answers. And of course, His Word never fails.

 

2 Thessalonians 1:11-12 (ESV)

“To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

 

This passage is one of Paul’s prayers for the Christians in Thessolinica. It’s incredibly rich, so we’ll only pull out a few things. One of the best tools in Inductive study is the tool of asking questions. Let us, therefore, interrogate these verses, find our answers from the text, and unwrap their meaning:

 

What is Paul praying for the Thessalonians? List it out: 1) That God make them worthy of His calling. 2) That God may fulfill every resolve for good. 3) That God may fulfill every work of faith.

 

Who does the making and fulfilling here? God.

 

Why does Paul pray those three things for them? So that Christ’s name is glorified.

 

Where is Christ’s name glorified? “In you”

 

Now look closely: How was God going to make them worthy and fulfill their resolve? By His power.

 

I know you only quickly read through that, so let’s stop and consider. Through a few questions we learned the worth and power of resolve. If you missed it, look back. Paul prayed for the fulfillment of their resolve to do good and their works of faith. That is what they resolved to do. But to what end? Paul said, “So that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified.”

 

Do we resolve to do good and to work in faith? Is our reason to glorify Christ?

 

But it gets better: as we act on and fulfill resolve, where is Christ glorified?

 

In us.

 

Dude! Resolve isn’t about us! It’s about Who is honored when we live it. (If you caught it, we are also glorified in Him–pretty awesome.) Even still, the best part by far is God’s role: God fulfills resolve. He fulfills works of faith. He sustains it all by His power. Paul even ads at the end “according to the grace of our God.” You nor I will ever be able to fathom what we have in God’s grace and power. In other words–when it comes to resolve–you lack nothing if you chose to take it.

 

Living true resolve looks different for everyone, but God makes it’s goal and sustaining power the same. What, then, is your good? What is your work of faith? Is it something to start? Something to stop? If you claim to follow Christ, Christ desires and delights to be glorified in you. What is in you that doesn’t glorify? What comes out of your mouth? What do your eyes look at? What do you let your ears hear? Your hands touch? Your mind think? All these give evidence to what is truly in you–Christ’s glory or a heart far from Him.

 

A couple of my good friends served as Marines in Iraq and Afghanistan. In Boot Camp, they resolved to do what it took for the honor of their name–to become Marines. To be called “Marine” is an honor. More so is to be called “Christian.” Let us also as Christians, then, resolve to do what it takes for the honor of our name. Do we not have an infinitely greater power, reason, and reward for endurance?

 

Christ has given you the honor of glorifying Him by your resolve. I pray God may not only show what resolution you need to take, but empower you to glorify His Son by remaining in it.

 

“To this end we always pray for you.” Resolve.

 

Stephanie has been serving for several years with Transform Student Ministries as a Boot Camp and Conference Staffer. Stephanie was also, a part of the Intern Program in 2010.

If you enjoyed this article, please consider sharing it!
Icon Icon Icon

One Response

01.28.13

I’m in a season right now, where things are getting busy, and its hard to see the fruit of it all. This was a GREAT reminder of RESOLVE! Everything seems to make sense when I do it for Him. :) Thanks Stephanie!

Leave Your Response

* Name, Email, Comment are Required