For a number of reasons, I am in an extended period of deep introspection. While I think this is a good exercise from time to time, it can feel a little weird–at least it does for me.
During some times of solitude in the midst of travels this week, I have been meditating on 2 Timothy 3, especially the first 7 verses where Paul warned Timothy about some people that he would encounter. The list of attributes is downright awful. Paul included that some would be: brutal, treacherous, abusive, greedy, heartless, unappeasable. Paul warned about some who would take advantage of women, be burdened with sins, and overcome with uncontrollable passions. They would lack self control. Timothy was to avoid these ungrateful, unholy people. But of course. It only makes sense.
But in the whole of the letter and at several points in chapter 3, it seems that Paul was saying that these were people in the community or, to be more specific, people in the church. These are ones that had an appearance of godliness but denied its power. And then a conviction hit me with force…. What if that is me in some ways?
Now I don’t want to start bleeding all over blog posts here, but what could be worse than to be one who had an appearance of godliness all the while not experiencing His power? What, I wonder, could be more frightful than to be one who chose to follow Christ who does not fully trust Him? Profoundly convicted, I am certain this is me all the while that I am set on the course of mission with only a passing interest in prayer. This is me when I am seeking to bring about transformation while not begging him to transform others and to still be transforming me.
Paul’s list is terrible period. But it is frightful when I look honestly and see my picture there in too many of those descriptions.
God change me.