Congregational Church of the Chimes
Walking together in Faith, Fellowship and Service...
expressing hope and experiencing God's love.
Children's Message in worship with Nursery care and Sunday School available for all ages
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” (Colossians 3:16)
The term “admonish” that is found in the verse above, in the Greek language can roughly be translated to mean, “to exert positive pressure on someone’s logic or reasons in order to urge them to turn towards God’s best for their lives.” Perhaps, one of the best biblical examples of the admonishment of another is found in Paul’s letter to Timothy.
To consider the background of this text, Timothy is a young spiritual prodigy that Paul met on his missionary journey; the one in which Paul and Barnebus spilt over a dispute about the worth of John Mark. Timothy would later become Paul’s chief partner in ministry and his right hand; co-authoring a least six of the New Testament books with the Apostle. Paul describes Timothy’s importance to the ministry simply while writing to the church of Philippi, “I have no one else like him, who will show genuine concern for your welfare.” (Philippians 2:20)
However, we know from scriptural inference that Timothy was likely shy and somewhat demure in demeanor. How nervous this young Pastor must have been when Paul left him in charge of one of the largest new testament churches; the church at Ephesus. Paul worked with Timothy from the time he was a youth. Paul knew Timothy's particular temperament as well as the doubts that must have been circulating in this young man’s mind. The apostle, Paul decides to write and admonish Timothy, who is trying, in a measure, to fill the enormous shoes of his mentor. Exerting positive pressure on his mentee, Paul writes, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.…I constantly remember you in my prayers. Recalling your tears, I long to see you, so that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (1 Tim 4:12 / 2 Tim 1:3-7)
Wow, what a masterful way to urge Timothy to continue towards God’s best in his life. How many times, during difficulties, do you think Timothy unfolded Paul’s letter to reread his admonishment? I’m guessing, more than a few times. The scripture tells us this is exactly what we are to do for others. We are to speak into the lives of others during uncertain and shaky times with words of truth and love. In this way, we admonish and strengthen each other. During the next week, would you consider doing for another what Paul did for Timothy? Please take a moment to consider practical, intentional and purposeful ways that you can bolster the spirit of others, nudging them forward towards God's best for their lives and families.
Remaining In His Light,