For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind- (2 Timothy 1 :7)
Reading the first chapter of 2 Timothy, we can feel the loving, intimate, warm and paternal tone of the old apostle who is imprisoned and about to die. Paul is passing the torch to his pupil and warns him against the threats some people pose to the doctrinal integrity of the emerging church. Timothy must have been a shy young man who cried alongside the apostle tv 4) and was probably ashamed in relation to the gospel and the imprisonment of his mentor (v. 8″ At the same time, he possessed a strong faith that he inherited from his grandmother and mother (v. 5).
Fear is an inherent part of the human experience and it appears again in today’s verse. Fear, cowardice, and apprehension are all related emotions. The apostle urges his disciple to participate in «the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God» (v. 8). This sentence makes us think about resilience, because Paul encourages the young man to welcome suffering and reject fear so that his trials can make him stronger and purify him. Consequently, the apostles offer him the following tools: power, love and a sound mind, not of human but of divine origin.
To achieve anything we first need power and energy. This entails not only physical power but also the motivation to channel it in the right direction. We should consistently remember that without God there is no power.
Love is the second gif against the spirit of fear. It is easy to deal with people whom we love. Lack of love adds suspicion, doubt and mistrust in our relationships. The love God offers is so complete that it extends to our enemies— something revolutionary that even Christians have a hard time practicing.
The third gift is a sound mind. The original Greek word is sofronismos. This term also means «common sense,» «healthy and moderate mind,» and «right and balanced judgment.» The lack of cowardice does not entail being irresponsible and reckless but well-determined and cautious.
Whether timidity, lack of motivation or any other barrier is in your way, the Lord is ready to give you the strength to handle it. He will give you the power of love and a sound and right mind to make the best decisions. May God grant you these gifts today!