God has given you a gift
Every once in a while when I bump into a friend with whom I grew up or went to school with, they are surprised to find out that I’m a pastor. Well, not because I was a bad guy, even though I was, but because I was very shy. The first time I stood before a group of people to speak I shook like a leaf from start to finish.
Before I entered full-time ministry, I painfully lead worship at my home church, and reluctantly preached or shared in different group settings until 2 Tim. 1:6 actually came alive in me. God had place a gift in me, but I was too shy to step out and use that gift for his glory. I was almost incapacitated by the power of fear.
Timothy was a naturally shy guy as well, and was probably in his twenties when he was called into the ministry (1 Tim. 4:12). But thank God he had somebody like Paul who recognized that he had a gift – that God had deposited something great in him. A gift that he needed to polish or in Paul’s words “fan into flame.”
2 Timothy 1:6
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,
Fan into flame the gift of God.
Paul does not explain what this gift is (1 Tim. 4:14). But it probably refers to something related to Timothy’s calling to and gifting for ministry, as indicated by God (by prophecy) and recognized by the church when the council of elders laid their hands on him. Therefore, this allows the principle here to be seen as applicable to all kinds of spiritual gifts.
Such gifts tend to fade in strength when they are not used and encouraged.
God has given you a gift, it is in you. Please don’t neglect it, don’t let it sit there and fade in strength. Fan it into flame. Put it to use. Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity (1 Ti, 4:12). And if you think you are too shy to step up, let this verse burn in you to give you the confidence you need. With the help of the Lord you will grow in confidence and strength.
I urge you to kindle a fire in your life. Kindle means to excite, to stir up, to get going. If you write, step up and begin the research for your first book. If you sing join a group, your church choir or worship band. Maybe you are called to teach, or preach – begin to take steps today. Get off the bench; get of the fence. Your church needs you; the Lord needs you, somebody out there needs you.
Fan you gift into flame!
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