“Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” 2 Timothy 2:1
You will be strong in something today. One quality, characteristic, or pattern of thought will dominate all others. At the end of this day you will have been shaped by what you were strong in during this day. It may be something good that has shaped you, or it may be something bad. Let's look at a few candidates.
You may be strong in fear. Each day presents plenty of opportunities for fear, and no one can dispute the reality of possible storms. Fear is a natural and normal response to these uncertainties. But will you be strong in fear?
You may be strong in resentment. Everyone of us collects people along the way that have been unkind or worse. The mention of a name may bring to your mind a rush of images and well-rehearsed stories. There's a certain perverse joy in hate. It gives you energy. very costly energy, of course, but energy nevertheless. Resentment is an typicalresponse. But will you be strong in resentment today?
I could go on and describing anger, doubt, arrogance, etc. These corrosive qualities are fairly common. We all experience them, and tend to underestimate their effect. The question remains, will you be strong in one of them today?
Paul wrote two letters to a young minister named Timothy who was struggling in many ways. These two letters contain a dozen or more exhortations and encouragements. Among them is the one listed above: “be strong in the grace of Christ Jesus.” Paul knew that every day Timothy would give in to his problems or embrace God’s promise.
God knows that about you also. When you are strong in the grace of Christ Jesus, you are less likely to feed your fears, or give too much power to your problems, or too much weight to your critics. Being strong in grace means that you will receive God’s grace and give it more freely. Being strong in His grace means that you know He will work in your life and bring you through any problem. Being strong in grace means stepping out of the storm and into the security of God’s presence and power.
The good news is that God gives you the power to choose. Through Jesus Christi you can be stronger in grace than anything else.
Dr. Terry Ellis
September 1, 2013