Step #1: Lectio / Read
2 Timothy 1:1-3, 6-12
Paul, an Apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God
for the promise of life in Christ Jesus,
to Timothy, my dear child:
grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father
and Christ Jesus our Lord.
I am grateful to God,
whom I worship with a clear conscience as my ancestors did,
as I remember you constantly in my prayers, night and day.
For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame
the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands.
For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice
but rather of power and love and self-control.
So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord,
nor of me, a prisoner for his sake;
but bear your share of hardship for the Gospel
with the strength that comes from God.
He saved us and called us to a holy life,
not according to our works
but according to his own design
and the grace bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before time began,
but now made manifest
through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus,
who destroyed death and brought life and immortality
to light through the Gospel,
for which I was appointed preacher and Apostle and teacher.
On this account I am suffering these things;
but I am not ashamed,
for I know him in whom I have believed
and am confident that he is able to guard
what has been entrusted to me until that day.
Step #2: Meditatio / Meditate
Let's begin by introducing St. Justin Martyr, whose feast day is today. He possessed such a strong desire to pursue Truth that he eventually ended up being a martyr because of it. He was a great defender of the faith and became the first Christian philosopher. He was beheaded in the year 165.
Now, for the reading! St. Paul's words are so rich and profound, it is hard to find one place to start.
St. Paul reminds us to stir our gift of faith from God into a flame burning in our hearts. He also reminds us that The Lord "did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather of love and self-control." St. Paul believed this so strongly that he was not even ashamed of his testimony to the Lord, even though he was in prison. These words also echo the testimony of St. Justin Martyr, who defended his faith to the very end. St. Paul and St. Justin held their confidence in the Lord who "destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel."
In your daily life, how can you reflect the confidence and trust in our Lord that St. Paul and St. Justin had? They followed their faith all the way to their death. Obviously, our dear Lord does not call us to be martyrs today, but He does want us to proclaim our faith without fear. We know He is always with us. We can rely on Him to replenish our strength needed to carry out God's will.
Step #3: Oratio / Pray
"For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control."
Lord, how can I be confident in your grace through whatever challenges life throws at me today?
How can I proclaim your love for me like St. Justin Martyr did?
In what areas of my life are you asking me to trust you more?
Step #4: Contemplatio / Contemplate
"Lord, show me how much you love me today."
"Stir my faith into a flame."
"Spirit of power, love, and self control."
"Jesus, I trust in you."
For the Rest of Your Day...
If there is a moment to verbally share your faith today, don't shy away from it. The Holy Spirit will provide you with every word you need to say. Have bold confidence and trust in our Lord!
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Today's prayer was prepared by Sarah Lundgren.