Preach the Word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. (2 Timothy 4:2)
As I sat in the detainment unit, I was having a wrestling match within. Here I was again. Same airport. Same country. And yet it seemed like everything was against me getting into the United Kingdom. Already I had been sent back in August of that same year (2012) with my pride greatly wounded (not really a bad thing, but still hard). Now I was moments away from it possibly happening again. I needed courage. I needed something stronger than man’s comfort.
In the detainment area there was a bookshelf with different religious texts. I went straight to the Holy Bible. I opened to words that I would never forget,
Not withstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me, that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear, and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. (2 Timothy 4:17)
Daniel in the lion’s den. That was me. And I was about to be rescued from it. I went to the start of 2nd Timothy and eagerly devoured it’s pages.
One of the most beautiful experiences with God’s Word is when it comes to you as if written directly to you. Ever since my experience in England second Timothy has been such a book for me. No words compare to those found in the Bible. Here were words of perfection, written to a young and zealous disciple of Christ.
Over the years this book has challenged me, comforted me, and encouraged me. I’ve seen in it a personal letter from God. A call to proclaim the excellencies of Christ and His Word. I fall short of it often, as I do with everything God commands, but my goal and my ambition is to be pleasing to Him. To be faithful to the Word.
When I write on politics; when I call out church hypocrisy; when I oppose authoritarian leadership, try to defend the rights of the needy, and write about Christ and His beauty, then I am striving to be obedient to the verse above. Proclaim the Word. I take that seriously. Because that Word has something to say to all of us, and not just when we sit in detainment units. It speaks in the streets, in the pulpits, in the pews, in the marketplace, in the home, in the Halls of Congress, in Hollywood, and in every sphere of life.
In that little room I read of Paul’s charge to Timothy, that he should never be ashamed about testifying of Christ. So I wasn’t either. I told that Immigration officer exactly why I was there. It was crazy. It wasn’t the wise thing to do. And I yet got into Britain.
What is God saying to you? What is the Holy Spirit saying through His eternal Word? Be alright with changing your mind. Question your assumptions and you will see Jesus Christ change how you live. A way of life that pleases Him, that effects what is around you and especially what is inside you. He is speaking, are you listening?