“In the apostle Paul’s first letter to Timothy,” Stan began, “there is, for me, an important lesson in how I am to behave, in being an example.”
Continuing, he said, “Also, it points out to me to which people I am to be an example.”
“Who’s that?” I asked.
“Everyone,” was Stan’s one-word response. “Paul encouraged Timothy to be an example of those who believe. Paul did not say to be an example ‘to’ those who believe.”
“As we have talked about many times,” Stan continued, “I think Paul was a master at using specific words to convey special meaning. In this instance, it seems that he specifically chose to use the word ‘of’, rather than ‘to’, to emphasize something he encouraged Timothy to do and to be.”
“And,” he added, “what Paul wrote applies specifically to me.”
“It is a given,” Stan said, “that I am to be an example of a believer to fellow believers, but here I think Paul was emphasizing the need to be an example of a believer to those who do not believe so that those unbelievers might become believers.”
“Learn from example,” I replied.
“Yes,” Stan responded, “and not only learn, but be attracted to an example. May others who do not believe know that I am a Christian, see a Christ-likeness in me, and want the same for themselves.”
Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe. 1 Timothy 4:12.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, that you want me to be an example of what it means to be a believer so that others may come to you in belief. You know how much help I need in being that example. I confess to my failings and ask for all of the help you can provide so that in everything I manifest to all, believers and unbelievers, what it means to be a believer. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Things to think (and journal) about:
- What strikes you as the biggest take-away from this devotional?
2. What does this devotional say about God and about us as His people?
3. What is God saying to you to do personally?
4. Who can you share this with to make a difference?
Comments, questions, suggestions, and the like can be addressed to The Storyteller at: firstname.lastname@example.org.