We have been doing a “Focus and Amplify” study of 2nd Timothy. In our last visit we pointed out something of the power of remembering. Paul remembered things about Timothy that prompted him to pray for him.
Then he writes in verse 6: “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.” Paul sensed Timothy was weary from the challenge of dealing with the needs of the church in Ephesus. In addition, Paul remembered the opposition he experienced from the silversmiths, and specifically from Alexander. Timothy no doubt encountered similar opposition. Paul wanted him to remember how God had gifted him for just such circumstances.
It’s so easy to forget when facing the pressure of such a moment. Remembering what God did to equip you for just such a moment releases the power of encouragement. It also is an antidote to the debilitating feelings of being ashamed.
In verse 8 Paul challenges Timothy: “Do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner.” Timothy saw Paul maligned so many times for testifying about the Lord. Sometimes he might have distanced himself from Paul so he would not be caught in the crossfire. Paul had noticed.
Now Paul was in prison in Rome. He couldn’t come along side, put his arm around his shoulder and encourage him. So he wrote, “God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. So do not be ashamed.” We need to remember this word of encouragement.