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Image credit: J Cathcart

Rekindle the gift of God that is within you

Most of us go through dark times in our Christian journeys, either as a result of our own actions, or those of another, or the random touch of fate. Bad things happen to good people. In a recent dark time for me, I spent a lot of time questioning God. Why had this happened, when would it be over, why did he seem so silent? So absent! As I tried to hold on to faith in the desert, I recalled past times when God had spoken clearly and loudly. I remembered past evidences of his love and care. I lived with these memories as oases in the dessert, reminding myself that he had always been faithful in the past and there was no evidence, despite his silence, that he would not, in the end, be faithful now. “I know the one in whom I have put my trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard until that day what I have entrusted to him.”

Father, when life seems to be crumbling around us,
help us to know your strength and comfort,
in darkness as in light,
in sorrow as in joy,
in pain as in comfort.
Help us to guard the good treasure entrusted to us, 
with the help of the Holy Spirit living in us, Amen.

2 Timothy 1:1-14 (NRSVA)

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, for the sake of the promise of life that is in Christ Jesus,

2 To Timothy, my beloved child:

Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

3 I am grateful to God—whom I worship with a clear conscience, as my ancestors did—when I remember you constantly in my prayers night and day. 4 Recalling your tears, I long to see you so that I may be filled with joy. 5 I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that lived first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, lives in you. 6 For this reason I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; 7 for God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.

8 Do not be ashamed, then, of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner, but join with me in suffering for the gospel, relying on the power of God, 9 who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works but according to his own purpose and grace. This grace was given to us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, 10 but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 11 For this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher, 12 and for this reason I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know the one in whom I have put my trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard until that day what I have entrusted to him. 13 Hold to the standard of sound teaching that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 14 Guard the good treasure entrusted to you, with the help of the Holy Spirit living in us.

 
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