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. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God. He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.
2 Timothy 1:6-10
Monster killer: Love
False imprisonment, whippings and beatings, a shipwreck, rumors and lies spread about him, ridicule, sleeplessness, and extreme hunger. What would you call a guy who perseveres through these things to share the good news of Jesus with people?
Courageous? For sure. Strong? Definitely. Determined? Absolutely.
Loved? Loving? Uh…didn’t think of that.
I’m talking about the apostle Paul, who wrote the Bible verses above to his good friend, Timothy. Paul went through extreme suffering in order to spread God’s Word to people who didn’t know God’s true love in Jesus.
Paul was afraid at times. Wouldn’t you be? But something kept Paul going. Something slapped his fear in the face and held it back.
It was love.
Jesus’ love for him had radically transformed Paul’s life. He realized he now didn’t have to fear the ultimate fear of eternal death. He grew up thinking the opposite. He grew up fearing God and thinking the only way to heaven was through following a bunch of rules—rules he knew he couldn’t keep completely.
But now Paul knew better. He knew that he was saved by God’s great power and love. So with his ultimate fear gone, he was now ready to face his other fears in life. Now he not only knew he was loved by Jesus, but he felt love for other people. He wanted them to have the same peace he felt. Paul’s love for other people kept him going.
The next time you face fear, especially the fear of sharing your faith, remember this: love drives out fear. Jesus loves you right in that moment. He’s with you as you stand next to that person who needs to hear about him.
Let your love for that person slap your fear in the face. When you look at that person with love, things change!
Facing the monster of fear with Jesus’ love is a recipe for success.
Prayer: Jesus, thank you for your love for me. Holy Spirit, thank you for giving me power, love, and self-discipline. The next time I feel afraid of rejection or suffering because of my faith in you, fill my mind and heart with the truth of how much you love me. Your perfect love drives out my fear. You help me do what seems impossible—you help me love another person and share the good news of Jesus with them. Thank you! Amen.