Melbourne lockdown 2.0 – Finding strength
As Melbourne enters Stage 3 restrictions again, this time we know what it's all about. It won’t be novel and new, it’ll put pressure and strain on individuals and families across the city. Financial issues that you might have avoided or just started to recover from now moves to the forefront of your mind again.
2 Timothy 2:1-9
You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others. Join with me in suffering, like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in civilian affairs, but rather tries to please his commanding officer. Similarly, anyone who competes as an athlete does not receive the victor’s crown except by competing according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel, for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God’s word is not chained.
Paul wrote this to his friend Timothy during a spell in a Roman prison. The price of serving the Gospel. Today, we can gain strength from his words.
Paul’s advice to Timothy was to be strong, but not to find that strength from within himself. We can only find the strength required from in one place… in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. This means that Timothy’s strength would be a gift from God and would be the solution for him in times of weakness - just as it is for us today.
Paul tells Timothy to start intentionally disciplining someone. Why not start today? That could mean using this time to start studying the bible with someone or to find a prayer partner. You might need to find someone you trust to keep you spiritually accountable during this time. Or you might want to intentionally spend time in the Word of God with your own children or grandchildren.
Finally, we are reminded by Paul’s story, and by our own, the Word of God is not bound! There are no barriers to its power. Even in Paul’s time, the Word of God spread, through letters, through God’s people, through the growth of the early church…
Nothing can stop God and His Word!