2 Timothy 1:6-7 (plus a little at no charge)

6For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. (NIV)

And the special gift of ministry you received when I laid hands on you and prayed—keep that ablaze! God doesn’t want us to be shy with his gifts, but bold and loving and sensible. (MSG)

6For this reason I remind you to kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline. (NASB)

6 Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. (NKJV)

To stir up, kindle afresh, fan into flame, keep ablaze the gift of God, the charisma of God, the passion we have… Paul reminds Timothy to do this right at the beginning of this great letter. It isn’t without import that he reminds him to do this while reminding him of his spiritual heritage. It is similar to what the author of Hebrews does in chapters 11 and 12. After detailing the rich history of giants in the faith, and sharing how they didn’t look back, but looked ahead to an eternal inheritance, the author then writes that we should throw off all that hinders and fix our eyes on Jesus!!

What are you passionate about? What are your gifts? What makes your burn with a fire that can’t be quenched but to do it with all your heart unto God?? Perhaps you are in a period of your life where you don’t feel very passionate about God or your life. Look back for a moment and remember a time when your faith was alive and real, true and sincere, passionate and compelling. If it was real then, it is just as real now, but something may be hindering you, entangling you, choking you. Throw that aside and cling to what was real. Jesus. Jesus. Jesus. He alone is real and in Him all things are held together. Hold on to that. Believe it. Cling to it. As though your life depends on it… because it does.

Then and only then can you lose that spirit that binds.. .that spirit of fear and timidity and dread and find your spirit of zeal and fire. Then you can live that spirit of power (dunamis….dynamite! no, not napoleon), agape love (when you seem to only care about yourself and yet feel so empty in that find out why you are so powerless, what is entangling you, what is choking out your passions), and have a sound mind.

I will never forget a sunday school lesson (in part because my wife will remind me from time to time) when I taught on King Nebuchadnezzar, when he grew so proud that God struck him mad and he ended up with dreadlocks in the wild eating bugs. I looked up from the Word and said, with all sincerity, that I was “this close to being like Nebuchadnezzar.” Why was that? Because I was bound in a spirit of pride and independence, thinking that I was godly enough in myself to be an exception to God’s principles. I was saved, seeking Him (generally), and often experienced His love, power, and grace. But, I was putting other idols before Him. The result? I was losing His power, love and my mind. With that I was losing that godly virtue of moderation and self-control. Philippians 4:4-6. As we lose that we become like the city without walls mentioned in Proverbs. We are defenseless to the enemy. Proverbs 25:28. Satan has us right where he wants us.

But, praise God, he calls us to remember our salvation, His victories in our lives, our spiritual heritage. He brings to mind the hog calls that lead to divine appointments, the all night prayer sessions with a friend, the times sharing Jesus, the day in the orphanage or the prison or the visit to a hospital bed, the vision of two paths and which one we must follow. Those memories can give us hope. Why did God constantly tell the Israelites to remember how they left Egypt? Psalm 105-106. He tells us the same today! And Praise Him he promises us peace, soundness of mind, joy, gratitude, love… Philippians 4:4-8, Jeremiah 17:5-15, Psalm 1, 2 Peter 1:3-10.

Look back on how God worked in your life to save you from failure. Don’t dwell on the failures or on things you thought were bad or evil; instead, fix your eyes on Jesus. Remember who Jesus was and is and will be and what He did in your life. Fix your eyes on Jesus and His call for your life: to live passionately for God and compassionately for others. Matthew 22:36-40. Make sure of your call! 2 Peter 1:3-10. Through His grace and power alone, I love you, but, more importantly, God loves you. Let Him. Let go. I AM NOT. HE IS. I AM HIS.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Previous post Pray For Us
Next post Place of Refuge – The Big Island