Friday, October 07, 2016

"Do Your Best"

2nd Timothy 4.9 NIV

“Do your best to come to me quickly”.

By the time Timothy received read his mentor’s request, “do your best to come to me quickly”, it might have been too late. Paul may have died as he predicted:

“For I am already being poured
out like a drink offering, and the time
has come for my departure.”
2nd Timothy 4.6 NIV

Why did Paul call for Timothy? If their meeting was to take place, it must occur quickly in Rome where Paul was incarcerated for a second and final time. Timothy would have to journey by ship, presumably at his own expense, from his home in Ephesus over 800 miles away. Was there further truth Paul must convey to Timothy in person? A top secret and classified message that could be conveyed only in private? Probably not. Did Paul send for Timothy just to deliver his coat?

“When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas.”
2nd Timothy 4.13 NIV

Clearly, Paul wanted more than from Timothy than his service as an errand boy. Why then? Why was Paul adamant about the need to “come”? Twice in the closing chapter of his short letter (vv. 9, 21), Paul virtually insisted on Timothy’s visit:

“Do your best to come to me quickly”
“Do your best to get here before winter”

Why was the Apostle so determined to see Timothy before the end of his life? The answer is found in the beginning of his very personal letter:

“Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy.”
2nd Timothy 1.4 NIV

There was nothing unusual, secretive, or utilitarian about Paul’s urgent request to see Timothy. His command to “come” was simply an expression of the enormous love Paul felt for his son in the faith. He missed Timothy. That was all.

 
God created you to miss the people you love during times of separation. Enjoy them while you still have them because you won’t have them for long. Time is short. “Do your best to come... quickly” to the side of those who are near and dear. Your “departure” (or theirs) may be nearer than you think. You will not always get to touch, hold, kiss, or embrace the people Jesus gave you. Don’t wait too long, or prepare to live with regret. “Do your best” to place a high priority on important relationships... while you still can.
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"Rows of Tombstones - Black and White" was shot by Washington, D.C. photographer Craig Steinberg whose very interesting work you can view at http://www.craigsteinbergphotography.com/.

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