Reading: Acts 16:1-40
Focus: Acts 16:3
Paul wanted to take him along on the journey, so he circumcised him because of the Jews who lived in that area, for they all knew that his father was a Greek.
(I know, it’s weird… but hang in there with me.)
So as I read this passage today, this one question jumped out at me that admittedly is a little strange. I’m hoping I’m not alone here in my wondering and please, if you read the passage and gleaned a beautiful spiritual truth from it, please stop reading this right now – I don’t want to ruin it for you ?.
Timothy – grown-up, adult man Timothy – got circumcised? That’s just weird. Thank goodness for Bible commentaries that help me make sense of the madness. There’s actually a pretty cool inspiration once you get past the “that had to hurt” bit. So I didn’t know this, but apparently Jewish law would have prohibited uncircumcised Timothy from teaching in the synagogue. This would have seriously hindered Timothy’s ability to help Paul on his missionary journeys. Paul asked Timothy to help him spread the Gospel to the Jews, and Timothy loved Jesus so much and was so passionate about spreading the Gospel that he did whatever it took.
We may not be able to relate to Timothy’s particular circumstance, but we have to ask ourselves the question: “Am I willing to do whatever it takes?”
I love being comfortable. I like wearing comfortable clothes. I like a cushy couch and my soft, comfy bed. I like the temperature to be right around 75 – not too hot, not too cold. I say all this with an uncomfortable feeling in my gut (that has nothing to do with the gross shake I ate for breakfast). As much as I love and long to be comfortable, I know that I am not called to be driven by my own comfort. At the very moment I set my life down at the feet of Jesus and asked Him to be the leader of my life, my comfort could no longer be my priority. So I’m uncomfortably challenged by Timothy’s devotion.
Timothy was willing to do whatever it took. Even something incredibly uncomfortable. I think it’s just about focus. When I can get my eyes off myself and put them on Jesus, my priorities line up with His and the adventure He calls us to begins to look more desirable than personal comfort. That’s where we choose the road less travelled. The narrow road, the high road, whatever you call it, it’s an uncomfortable road. But it’s the fun one! It’s the one that brings life and purpose and joy.
It’s so much easier to choose that road when we’re not focused on our own comfort, but instead we’re focused on Jesus. Are we, like Timothy, willing to do whatever it takes?
Lord Jesus, please forgive me for so often focusing on my own comfort over Your call. Life in You is the adventure I want to be on. Thank You for the invitation! In Your name I pray, Amen.