Intro: Times of transition [a process of change] can be difficult because it means we must adjust to a new way of seeing life or relating to new circumstances. Transition brings transformation [a marked change or end result]. God’s plan for our lives will always involve ongoing times of transition; we are being transformed from glory to glory into the image of Christ (2 Cor 3:18).
Jesus spoke of the difficult transition leading to a transformed life as his followers, “Enter through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and spacious and broad is the way that leads away to destruction, and many are those who are entering through it. But the gate is narrow (contracted by pressure) and the way is straitened and compressed that leads away to life [eternal], and few are those who find it (Mat 7:13-14). God transitions us by stripping off the old things we have held onto, so we will welcome the new things he intends to bring into our lives. Beyond the narrowing is abundant life. How we handle transition is important, because God is grooming us for his future Kingdom plans.
In our passage today, Paul is writing a letter to Timothy and letting him know he is coming into a time of transition—he is going to be facing a lot of pressure because he is stepping up in leadership. The pressure is not going to come because his responsibilities will be so different; rather the difficulty will come because Satan does not want Timothy to be empowered by God. The storms of persecution will come against him to stop his progress in the midst of the transition. Paul reminds Timothy that he has everything he needs to be successful in Christ—he has the resources of heaven that can always be appropriated by faith. The Holy Spirit will give Timothy the power he needs to be successful.
Many people are facing a storm induced transition, today. Maybe you are one of them. Your storm might be physical, emotional, or spiritual. If so, please make Christ your solid foundation and call on the power of the Holy Spirit to get you through it. On the other side of transition is a transformed life drawing nearer to the holiness of God.
2 Timothy 1:8-14 NLT
8 So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for him. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the sake of the Good News. 9 For God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan from before the beginning of time—to show us his grace through Christ Jesus. 10 And now he has made all of this plain to us by the appearing of Christ Jesus, our Savior. He broke the power of death and illuminated the way to life and immortality through the Good News. 11 And God chose me to be a preacher, an apostle, and a teacher of this Good News.
12 That is why I am suffering here in prison. But I am not ashamed of it, for I know the one in whom I trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until the day of his return.
13 Hold on to the pattern of wholesome teaching you learned from me—a pattern shaped by the faith and love that you have in Christ Jesus. 14 Through the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within us, carefully guard the precious truth that has been entrusted to you.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for loving your children so much that you bring times of transition in order to develop us in your holy character. Please be our Helper and lead us in the paths of righteousness for your glory. In Jesus’ name. Amen.