And make it your ambition (fondness of honor) to lead a tranquil life and to attend to your own things and to work with your hands just as we commanded you in order that you should walk becomingly towards those who are outside and not have need – 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

Ambition expresses the concept of what we have a fondness for honor in. It was Paul’s ambition to preach Christ where He had not been preached (Romans 15:20). It should be our ambition to lead a tranquil life. A life where we are content and at peace. The world system does not want us to have this type of lifestyle because through it we become self-sufficient while working with our own hands and minding our own business. If someone is not willing to work, then they should not eat from another’s labors (2 Thessalonians 2:10).

One of the aspects of godliness is contentment. Regardless of what we have on earth we are beloved in Christ and should be content with having food, clothing, and a roof over our head (1 Timothy 6:8).  So many issues are brought into our lives because we are not content with what we have (1 Timothy 6:9). This does not mean we cannot be motivated to improve our lives, for we should seek to grow, mature, become better, gain skills, work with our own hands so that we have more than we need and are able to help fellow saints in need. But through all that, we should be content with where God has us.

Contentment makes it difficult for the world system to influence us. It uses the desires from our flesh – newer things, a spouse, higher paying job, etc. to persuade us to seek those things through what it offers. It also uses the desires of the eyes to convince us to be jealous about what others have and wish if we only had money. This of course produces a fondness for money which is a root of all things wrong and brings a lot of harmful things into our lives (1 Timothy 6:10). In addition, it also uses the pride of biological life, which is where racism comes from. We are all human and come from the same source, so why would one think themselves better than another because of their ethnicity or color? It is because the world system wants to use this hatred for others to manipulate us to follow its desires (1 John 2:16). However, when we become self-sufficient, the desires of the world system do not hold such sway over us, and we are then able to properly use the things of the world without being overcome by them (1 Corinthians 7:31).

Therefore, as children of God, let our ambition be to lead a tranquil life while becoming self-sufficient by using what God has given us in Christ so that we can be content in any situation, working with our hands so that we are no longer manipulated by the desires from the world, but rather, standing as luminaries to those around by finding honor in contentment and a tranquil life.