So I was playing this mental game where you take biblical books and you update them so they’re more relevant to the profession of youth work and I got to 1 Thessalonians and got slightly worried for the sake of Paul, I mean, I’m not sure if he quite realises what he’s writing at some points. So I thought about it a bit and have revised it so that it’s not quite so inappropriate and I’ve made sure it’s keeping inline with best practice guidelines on working with young people. Here’s are some of the most troubling parts made more appropriate.
You hopefully have learnt, young people, that our visit to you was, in our estimation, not a failure. We had previously worked in Philippi where some stuff happened which probably isn’t appropriate for us to divulge here, but with the help of our God we dared to tell you his gospel. For the suggestion we make does not spring (well, at least we reckon so as Christians) from error or impure motives, nor are we trying to trick you. On the contrary, we speak as men approved by the God in whom we believe exists to be entrusted with the gospel. Our motivation isn’t really relevant here, because, well we don’t like to talk about it. You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed—God is our witness, as are the reports we filled in along the way.
We were not looking for praise from men, not from you or anyone else, not that there is anything wrong with your praise. As people who think themselves apostles of Christ we could have been a burden to you, but we were gentle among you, like someone being nice to someone else in a completely professional, appropriate, and safe manner. We enjoyed the work we were doing with you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God. I mean only the gospel. Sorry. Typo. Surely you remember, young people, our toil and hardship; we worked 35 hours a week while we told you about the gospel of God.
For you know that we dealt with each of you entirely appropriately and without any sense of favouritism, pride, joy or any other emotion.
For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? It is not you. Indeed, finding our joy and glory in you would be grossly inappropriate.
Greet all the young people with a hug from the side if they initiate it first.