2 Timothy 2:15

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the truth.

I read this passage at a time when I was questioning myself about all the things I was doing and the decision that I had made. That moment of confusion, doubt, and uncertainty.

The sentence that spoke to me powerfully was this. “…. a worker who does not need to be ashamed”

We face moments when we are ashamed of the decisions we make. I was going through a time of discouragement…where I said, God, I know what I am doing…but time to time I feel ashamed of the decisions that I have made.

The word ashamed is defined as, “embarrassed or guilty because of one’s actions, characteristics or associations.” 

Here’s a story of what happened and what led me to have the feeling of being ashamed. 

Few weeks ago, I came out of an association after I felt clearly in my heart, that this was not the place for me to be. So, I made up my mind, spoke to people that I should and left the place (it was smooth exit but a bit drastic in someways). After leaving those memories kept haunting my mind…telling me.. that I am not consistent enough with my decisions. I had to also face some flak for it. At the end of it…I started to be ashamed of myself for the decisions that I had made. I struggled this for about 3 weeks till until I read this verse.

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the truth.

Although, in this context, Paul talks about preaching the truth of God’s word to people without being ashamed but there is something we can take away from this verse and apply it to our other areas of life.

Paul outlines two important principles that anyone in the ministry should follow.

  1. Present yourself to God as one approved.

If Paul had written, present yourself to MAN as one approved, probably we would know how to present ourselves as one approved. But it says, Present yourself to God as one approved. 

Romans 12:1 says, ”Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.” Presenting our self as living sacrifices also means, that we present our self as one blameless, and upright. In the Old Testament times any sacrifice that is offered on the altar should be one without blemish

God prescribes a practice for sacrifice.

Exodus 12:5 says, 

The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats.

Coming back the context of my blog.

This is what I would say, when we present our self to God every day — we have to present ourselves without any doubt of our calling, without any fear of our actions and without any uncertainty of the decisions we make.

Blemish in a goat meant it was not approved for sacrifice. Likewise, if we have doubt, fear and uncertainty we are not presenting our self as an approved sacrifice before God.

We have heard the story of Cain and Abel. God favored Abel’s offering while he didn’t favor Cain’s. (Genesis 4). There are many interpretations that are drawn from this verse. Either Cain didn’t present the best of his fruits to the Lord or he did not have the right motive. One thing is clear, that is Cain did not present his sacrifices in an approved manner.

We, now living in the New Testament period, we should offer ourselves as living sacrifices. That is, offer our self without any blemish or defect. In other words, we have to offer ourselves without any doubt, fear or uncertainty and with faith that God is in control.

The Second thing Paul writes is this,

“a worker that does not need to be ashamed”

As a worker of Christ. The enemy loves making us feel ashamed of ourselves. He wants us to feel low and down all times. One of his easiest way to put us down is by making us feel ashamed. We can easily stand false accusations, talks or any such arguments. We can prove ourselves right and get out of such situations easily. But the moment we feel ashamed of our self we will lose our sense of self-worth. It can take a long time to recover.

We have to make decisions in life that are clearly guided by God but may not be appreciated by people.

As a result, people will talk negatively about your decisions, character, and attitude. That can make us feel ashamed or even if they don’t talk about…the enemy will feed lies into your mind saying…this is what people think of you…!

We have to run away from all that and remind ourselves that, “I need to be a worker who does not have to be ashamed…”

In Conclusion,

Do what God has called you to do. God will guide you and you listen to that. Be obedient to his will. He will lead you. Although you may become a topic of talk for many people but do not be ashamed. Continue to do the Good work that you are doing.

Always remember to present yourself as one approved — Bringing the right sacrifice in the Old Testament was mainly the responsibility of the offeror himself and now in the New Testament, when we present our self as a living sacrifice…it is our responsibility to present ourselves to God without doubt of our calling, fear of our actions, and uncertainty of the decisions we make and never be ashamed of anything because, at the end of the day, God is leading us.

Leave a comment below, if you have faced any such situation and how you overcame. Would love to hear from you.!

 

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