Discerning Our Influence
Set an Example – Part 1
Scripture reading: 1 Timothy 4:9-15
Key Verse: 1 Timothy 4:12
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.
The Apostle Paul is coaching young Timothy in our scripture for today. In my opinion, Paul is teaching Timothy to discern his influence. Before digging into the scripture, look at the definition of the word influence: “the capacity or power of a person to be a compelling force on or produce effects on the actions, behavior, or opinions of others” (dictionary.com). Keep this definition in mind as we look at Paul’s words to Timothy.
First we see that Paul doesn’t want Timothy to let his age determine his influence. Just because he is young doesn’t mean he can’t influence others. Our age need not stop us from influencing the people around us. God wants to use us to be a “compelling force” on our world.
Secondly, Paul tells Timothy to “set an example.” In other words, be intentional about this power of influence. Timothy was to be conscious of the fact that people would be looking at his actions and behavior to see if they backed up his words. Note, in 1 Timothy 4:15, Paul wrote: “Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.” The motivation was not to be a prideful show-off, but rather a tool in God’s hands to be a compelling force on others around him. Let’s be intentional in our influence today. (Continued)
Father, remind me often today that people are watching how I handle life. May I influence them for you. In Jesus’ name, amen.