October 22

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“This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you” (2 Timothy 1:6 NLT).

From: October 22, 2018

WHOSE RESPONSIBILITY IS IT TO MAINTAIN MY SPIRITUAL ZEAL?
This is the second letter the apostle Paul wrote to his spiritual son in the Lord, Timothy. Here, we see Paul boldly reminding Timothy, as a father would a son, to take personal responsibility for his own spiritual zeal. He reminded Timothy of his calling into the ministry and the spiritual gift he had received at ordination, when Paul had affirmed God’s call on his life through the laying on of hands. Having reminded him of his calling and gifting, Paul urged him to “fan into flames” his spiritual gift from God. A fire can’t just be started and left to itself. It must be tended. It needs to be stirred, fresh fuel added, and the bellows used to increase the oxygen that feeds the flame. The gifting of God is like fire. It burns in those called. Yet, the fire must be maintained. Paul reminded Timothy to maintain his fire for God.
 
The more we pour out in ministry, the more we must pull away to fan into flames our spiritual gifting, so we do not lose our boldness and zeal. Are you fearful or discouraged in your calling? Fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you. Be reminded of the passion you once had for God and lean into Him in Scripture reading and prayer until you feel the flames rise anew.

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV).

From: October 22, 2017

Paul encouraged Timothy, his “beloved son” in the Lord, to overcome fear, knowing that it didn’t come from God. Timothy was Paul’s young protege, but he wasn’t yet as bold and confident as Paul. Even though Paul had left him in charge of the church at Ephesus, it seems he sometimes struggled because people looked down on him because of his youth (1 Tim. 4:12). So, Paul reminded him of his spiritual heritage, his ordination and of the “power, love and sound mind” that was his in Christ Jesus.
 
The word “fear” that Paul used might also be translated “timidity,” or “fearfulness.” The weight of responsibility and the constant challenge of pastoring a church in one of the largest cities in the Roman empire was no doubt heavy on young Timothy’s shoulders. The “spirit of fear” that assailed Timothy was not from God. It may have been from the evil one, but more likely it was of the fleshly kind, the kind that comes from self-doubt. This kind of fear is the opposite of faith and must be put off. Paul told him to rely on the “dunamis power” that had raised Christ from the dead and now belonged to him. He told him to draw on the “agape love” of God that had motivated Him to send His only Son. Finally, Paul told Timothy to think clearly with a “sound mind,” which is the “mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2:16) when considering the source of his fear, so that the fear would evaporate like a mist.
 
Are you suffering under a “spirit of fear” today? Put off fleshly fear and put on the power, love and wisdom of Christ!

“For I will surely save you, and you shall not fall by the sword, but you shall have your life as a prize of war, because you have put your trust in me, declares the Lord.” (Jeremiah 39:18 ESV)

From: October 22, 2016

This was the Word that the Lord gave Jeremiah for Ebed-melech the Ethiopian eunuch who had rescued him from the cistern. The city of Jerusalem would fall, but the Ethiopian would be saved. On the eve of Jerusalem’s fall, a Gentile was promised safety. This anticipates the salvation of the Ethiopian eunuch that Philip met on the desert road to Gaza in Acts 8:26-39. Even in the broad scope of nations at war, God cared for the one who gave aid to His prophet and believed His Word. God still cares for the one who does so.

“So teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12 NKJV)

From: October 22, 2015

This Mosaic psalm encourages us to be aware of the fleeting nature of life and to determine not to waste our days. This is not a morbid instruction, but one that faces reality. We have a finite number of days appointed unto us. Number them, be aware that each day is a gift from God and a holy stewardship. The promise of eternal life should not release us to waste this season, but should pull us toward investing every moment we have for God, so that we store up riches in heaven.

“So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord” (2 Timothy 1:8a NLT)

From: October 22, 2014

What causes us to feel shame to speak of Jesus? There are at least three reasons: 1) Lack of spiritual zeal. We don’t feel worthy to talk about Jesus because we are not living as we should. 2) Believing the enemy’s lies. These lies tells us that people aren’t interested in Jesus or that they will reject us or make fun of us. Our politically correct culture lies to us that it is inappropriate to speak of Jesus. 3) Lack of knowledge. We feel that we don’t know enough to be able to witness. Yet, witnessing is just telling others what Christ has done for you. Paul told Timothy to “never be ashamed.” Are you able to say, “I’m not ashamed to tell others about Jesus?”

“Teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12)

From: October 22, 2013

This psalm, attributed to Moses, encourages us to be aware of the fleeting nature of life and to determine not to waste our days. This is not a morbid instruction, but one that faces reality. We have a finite number of days appointed unto us on planet Earth. Number them, be aware that each day is a gift from God and a holy stewardship. The promise of eternal life should not release us to waste this season, but should pull us toward investing every moment we have for God, so that we store up riches in heaven.