I chose this photo with this post because this was the day that I went to the fair. It started to rain, and as a person of color my hair wasn’t completely acting right so I had to put it in a unplanned ponytail. I was wearing a long sleeve shirt under a top I thought would go better with it. Like true grandma fashion, I wore tennis shoes with pants they didn’t go with. I wore this today because it was the MN state fair. It was hot, lots of walking, and it made sense. To say the least, it was a day I didn’t technically feel pretty.
“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. Until I come, give attention to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation and teaching. Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery. Take pains with these things; be absorbed in them, so that your progress will be evident to all.” 1 Timothy 4:12-15 NASB
When I first gave my life to Christ, the Lord sent this passage of scripture to me in a dream. This was before I had gotten to the book of Timothy to know what it was about. I read, and the Holy Spirit illuminated this to me. I thought I knew what it meant then. Now almost 4 years later, the Lord sure has taken me on a journey toward discovering what it really meant for me.
Being consistent when you don’t feel like it, is a true test of your faith, and it has been a true test of my faith.
It’s one thing to start something, but it’s another thing to finish something. It’s one thing to be excited about something, but it’s another thing entirely to have the maturity to steward that excitement all the way through. What has this scripture meant for me?
Being consistent when you’re up.
Being consistent when you’re down.
Being consistent when people like you.
Being consistent when they don’t.
Being consistent when you feel loving.
Being consistent when you’ve been hurt.
Being consistent when you’re confused and don’t understand God’s plan.
Being consistent when you discern every movement of God.
Being consistent when you’re an expert.
Being consistent when you feel like the least knowledgeable person in the room.
Being consistent when people are better than you at everything.
Being consistent when you feel talented.
Being consistent when you feel pretty.
Being consistent when you feel sick.
Being consistent when you feel fear.
Being consistent when you’re overlooked.
Being consistent when no one seems to care.
Being consistent when you think you’re not going to make it.
Being consistent when you’re winning.
Being consistent when you feel like giving up.
All feelings and thoughts, based on this world.
I’ve had to learn that it’s God who is our rock. This is a changing world, and all things in it are temporary. Only He is unmoving, and unchanging. I write things like this to remind myself, but also to encourage others to keep going in their walk of faith. It’s a daily decision to look at things from God’s perspective, and not from this world. It’s a daily decision to KEEP GOING in faith despite how we feel. I am encouraged and excited about Jesus, and the strength He manifests in each and every one of us. It’s His strength that’s sufficient for us in our weaknesses, and in our limited flesh. Jesus is our hope, and light in this world! So that just like Timothy, we might be able to stand strong, be confident, be consistent, be an example, be loving, and faithful even when we feel fear, shy, timid, or young. God is by our side. You can do it! It’s a paradox to man, but with God all things are possible.