Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.
2 Timothy 2:22, NLT*
…not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Hebrews 10:25, NLT*
The Apostle Paul’s words to Timothy are ones we need to hear today in our fragmented, too-busy world.
Run from—the NIV says flee—”anything that stimulates youthful lusts.” This includes more than just provocatively-dressed women wreaking havoc with men’s hormones. It’s anything that catches our eye/ear/heart and we want it. For those of us who aren’t young anymore, it can even be things that promise to help us feel/look/act young again.
Pursue “righteous living, faithfulness, love and peace.” They don’t grow without an investment of our cooperation and effort, even though God is the Master Gardener.
Enjoy the companionship of other Christians. As we spend less time in meaningful church experiences, and we find fewer believers in the workplace and neighbourhood, we’re losing our support system. We need the companionship, encouragement and challenges of other Christians. We are, after all, a body. Not a collection of single units.
Dear Father, please help us recognize when to run away—to run to You. Strengthen us to pursue the life You’ve designed us to live. Remind us of the importance of Christian companions. I especially pray for those who know You but have drifted away from church and Christian community, that You will bring Christians into their lives and help them recognize their need for fellowship and unity. Lord, we are weakest alone, and You call us to be strong in You and to not give up meeting together. Remind us when we forget, and please forgive our forgetting.
*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.