Tuesday, March 19, 2013
I’ve never been a II Timothy fan. A few verses, of course, such as:
1:7 -- For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid,
but gives us power, love and self-discipline.
1:12 – That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause
for shame, because I know whom I have believed,
and am convinced that he is able to guard
what I have entrusted to him until that day.
2:11-13 Here is a trustworthy saying:
11 -- If we died with him,
we will also live with him;
12 -- If we endure,
we will also reign with him.
If we disown him,
he will also disown us;
13 -- If we are faithless,
he remains faithful,
for he cannot disown himself.
:15 -- Do your best to present yourself to God as one
approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed
and who correctly handled the word of truth.
:22 -– Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue
righteousness,faith, love and peace, along with
those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
3: 16 -- All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for
teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in
:17 -- So that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly
equipped for every good work.
4: 7-– I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race,
I have kept the faith.
:8 -- Now there is in store for me the crown of
righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge,
will award to me on that day—and not only to me,
but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
Since coming to the Lord and beginning to read the Word about 47 years ago, I read II Timothy many times, but now, finally, saw it deeply.
But, overall, during those years, nothing jumped out at me. Oh, except Paul asking Timothy to pack the books and coat and get them to him in this late stretch of prison.
Why did it finally hit my heart? Well, I ain’t a young ‘un any more. I look out at our world’s choices, our present-day events, and I become teary. [I can’t/won’t list them here. Don’t want to start an argument or a fight with anyone.]
Paul, in prison, in Rome, being martyred in A.D. 67, had no cell phones, no iPads, computer, instant news issues, full newspapers. But, knowing the world as he did, he was heart-aching.
Those of us in our present time see news bits from our local areas and around the world in a few seconds, a few minutes. For instance: the rape-death in India; the hundreds of battles in Syria, thousands and thousands of deaths; the two who died while rescuing a 6-year old boy in Sioux Falls, South Dakota at a lake; and, on the East Coast, roaches on a Greyhound bus.
We hear/know everything now that can break our heart -- or cause us to want to grab any possible insect-killing stuff to be sure our house wouldn’t be poured with roaches unexpectedly.
Life has been filled with information for us since the Word went from Genesis to Jude. The only Book I can’t always fit in at every present-day moment – although it ranks right up as a favorite – is Revelation. The day will come when I will truly understand that one.
So – I read posts of my Facebook friends and Blog-friends. I look at the neighborhood houses, rejoicing over some, concerned over others. I drive ALL OVER and I see much on our highways, towns, states -– some “loverly”, some practical everydayness, but, some heart, soul, and spirit crushing. Not as Paul was, in physical prison and heading for martyrdom, I AM sometimes in spirit-crushing prison. It often -- day-by-day, moment-by-moment -- creeps in.
OH, am I filled with joy, too? YES!!! Focusing on my Lord, thanking Him for my dear ones, thanking Him for breaking through my hard heart to Salvation. Yes, there’s JOY!! And I look forward to heaven .. for .. JOY!!