Joy Zomer

READ : 2 Timothy 1:3-15

For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. (v. 7)

God calls us to a life of faithfulness regardless of our circumstances. As young missionaries, we regularly heard stories of Hungarian Reformed believers who were tortured for their faith and commitment to Christ and his church during the Communist era. Later, while serving in southern Sicily, families of Methodist believers told of imprisonment and mistreatment during the Fascist years of Mussolini in World War II. I can only imagine the fear that these faithful Christians felt; yet, their commitment remained firm.

How often do we lose faith when times get challenging? How easy is it to waver instead of standing firm? Too often we wonder if we really are capable of the “power and love and self-control” that lives within us as believers. In today’s verses, Paul, jailed again, offers this reminder to Timothy who was then in Ephesus. Paul knew it wasn’t easy; he recognized that doubt could play a role in Timothy’s psyche. Yet, with clarity, he reminded Timothy that strength is offered through faith in a God who lives in us, every moment and in every experience.

Our faith in a loving God has never been tied to easy times. Stories of mistreatment of Christians around the world are regularly available. Yet just as Timothy was tied to Paul, so we each are encouraged to voice the truth, always. With God in us, we can do it.


Lead us, dear God, as we witness for you in times of trial and of joy.