I TIMOTHY 4:-8: “If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed. Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” (ESV)
OBSERVATION: Before you join a gym – examine your daily spiritual workout! We live in a health crazy world. The irony is that we also live with an epidemic of obesity and improper nutrition. What is the disconnect? Have you ever paid a lot of money to join a gym? There is nothing wrong with joining a gym. A regular exercise program is very beneficial, and gyms offer a great place to get that exercise. However, most people join a gym, pay the money, begin with great enthusiasm, only to soon drop out from going. And so the gym has endless membership drives and discounts to replenish its’ membership. Something is wrong.
This also happens with our spiritual disciplines. Every January people buy new Bibles or sign up for new Bible reading programs with their on-line Bibles. They begin with great enthusiasm. And then something happens. That something is called “Life”! I just had two days of “Life” that included very early mornings, tight travel schedules, and deadlines that required every second dedicated to get a project done. What got pushed to the side? You guessed it, my daily time in God’s Word. I felt like I was walking with shoes that had different size heels. Something was off, and I knew that something needed to be corrected immediately.
With a full week of training ahead I needed a game plan. Finding myself in a time zone two hours different than my normal time zone, I decided to go to bed early and get up extra early. I knew that I needed to rearrange my week right away if I was not going to get derailed. I have learned that bodily exercise is profitable – but that which brings godliness is of value in every way. As Paul exhorted Timothy – “…it holds the promise for this present life and also for the life to come.” I need God’s Word more than I need the air that I breathe. It is my daily bread, my very life. It is my time to look to God, hear from God, and respond with worship and prayer.
Paul knew how easy it would be for young Timothy to get off track. There would be countless things trying to pull him in every direction. The care of the church, the objection from naysayers, the allure of “new teachings”, the insecurity of his youth. All of these would try to grab Timothy’s attention away from the single most important thing – being a good servant of Jesus Christ, trained in the words of faith and of good doctrine – the doctrine of Grace! – the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ! Paul knew that to stay on track required discipline. To stay on track required daily being anchored in God’s Word!
Lord, thank You for Your Word! Thank You that You are always ready to speak into my life, fill me with Your Spirit, empower me with Your Grace, and equip me with all that I need to face each and every day. Help me to stand against the tyranny of the urgent and the error that Martha made through her “much serving”. Let me choose the good portion that Mary chose when she sat at Your feet. Let me abide in Your Word, listen to the still small voice of Your Spirit, and give my heart to worship and prayer. I love Your presence! In Jesus Name!