1 Timothy 4:14-15 – « Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. (NKJV)
Timothy was a young apostle in training. His Greek father was not a believer; but his Jewish mother and his Jewish grandmother were believers in Jesus. Timothy became the close associate of the apostle Paul, who sent him to different places to set in order what was needed in the churches. But Timothy was someone whose faith always lived in the shadows of someone else: first his mother, then Paul.
So Paul exhorted Timothy to give himself entirely to pursuing the call of God on his life. This idea of giving 100% of yourself was essential for one thing: that your progress may become visible to everyone.
Let’s be real honest with ourselves for a moment. Have we really grown significantly since last year? Have we grown so much that people can actually see it? It takes a long time to bring forth the fruit of growth. The first work that is done is usually in the roots of our soul where no one can see it, except God. Those are the essential victories that are necessary for properly building our lives. But no one can observe these victories. People don’t see roots. They can only see fruit. And it takes time for the fruit to become visible. But if the roots are healthy and strong, they will absolutely produce awesome fruit.
As years slide into decades, you can always try and convince people that you are working on the roots of your soul. But if the fruit isn’t changing then there is a real problem because « each tree is known by its fruit » (Luke 6:44) If you are still struggling with the fruit of anger, lust, pride, fear, resentment or any other toxic feelings and it is still difficult for you to love and forgive unconditionally, or to give your best to those the most undeserving, or to believe God despite contrary circumstances, then you must ask yourself what is most « evident » to those around you.
As we come into the final week of our Daniel Fast, you no doubt recognise that God has already done some wonderful things in your life since the beginning. But in this last week, I believe God wants to accelerate the work. This is NOT the time to diminish your perseverance. It is the time to press hard on the accelerator of your determination and get this life moving from 110 kph to 130 kph.
In just seven days this Daniel Fast will come to an end. Will you have gained everything from the fast that the Father intended to give you? I believe there is yet a higher place you can go to in your faith. So let’s get there together. Maybe there is something more you can give to God this week in terms of your time, your food, your Bible study, or your personal devotions. Maybe you’ve done these first two weeks at just 95% of your heart’s capacity. Why stop? Why compromise? Why hold back? Why live with the regret that you didn’t give your ALL?
I encourage you today to write down on the following lines what three things specifically you are going to do differently this week to get your life into that place of receiving everything from God that is possible. You and I can do this. So let’s do it together.