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2 Timothy 2:14-15(CEB)

14 Remind them of these things and warn them in the sight of God not to engage in battles over words that aren’t helpful and only destroy those who hear them. 15 Make an effort to present yourself to God as a tried-and-true worker, who doesn’t need to be ashamed but is one who interprets the message of truth correctly. 


Happy Leap Day! I always thought it would be fun to have a birthday on this day. I was not born in a leap year so no chance of that. If it does happen to be your birthday – enjoy it 4x today!

This text is under the title “Speak, instruct, and act correctly.” Verse 14 says “Remind them of these things and warn them in the sight of God not to engage in battle over words that aren’t helpful and only destroy those who hear them.” My job as a physical therapist in early intervention (working with birth to 3-year-olds in their homes) is to teach parents and other caregivers how to play and work with their children so that the kiddos can learn to walk or do whatever other skills they need to work on. I can often times find myself getting caught up in correcting positioning over and over again. That is my job – to figure out what position is best to help that child to move; however, sometimes that is not the most helpful way to go about it. Sometimes it is best to just have the family get comfortable with me so that they can trust that I am giving them proper info. If they feel like they are being criticized all of the time, then they may very well tune me out or ask for a different therapist to come to their home. I do have a certain style and it is just not right for all families. Sometimes it is just best for them to work with someone else, and that is easily managed.

It is a bit different though when we are talking to people about God. If we turn them off, maybe they will be turned off from God because of their interaction with us as God’s representative. We should be willing to share our faith stories, but not judge others’ stories. We should try not to engage in battles about words as verse 14 points out, and very often, especially in the current climate in this country, that is extremely hard to do. As Pastor Hendrickson pointed out on Sunday though, Job’s friends came to visit which was great, but then they told Job it was his fault that things had gone so poorly. We can blame people for what has happened in their lives, but how does that help if they need support and a listening ear? Don’t get me wrong, we need to be truthful, but we don’t need to say every thought in our head. We can certainly share every thought we have with God though. God already knows our every thought, so it certainly doesn’t hurt to say it out loud to God, and it can certainly help us to vent. God has frequently had to listen to me complain or yell when I get into my car after a visit with a family because I am so frustrated, but God has also heard many praises because of how well a visit went or because a kiddo started walking or met a goal and is going to be discharged.

For Pondering & Prayer


When was the last time you shared your faith story with someone? How was it received? God wants us to be willing to share, but to look to God for what we should do – sometimes we just need to sit with someone and not give them our opinion. Sometimes people just need to know that we care. Who in your life just needs to get a text, a call, or a card from you to just say “Hi, I’m thinking of you” today?

Prayer: Dear God, who knows our every thought, please find us as hard workers for you, but help us to say only what we need to say and not to be overly critical when we talk to those in need. Help those people to see You in us that their faith story as well as ours may grow stronger. Amen.