I wrote you the last two weeks that the ministry is not our job. It’s our calling. That calling requires that we flee from certain things. However, along with fleeing from those things, we need to follow after other things.
I love the double action stated here. While we are fleeing from certain things, we are at the same time following after other things. The word that appears in my Bible is pursue (1 Timothy 6:11). The tense of the original term indicates that we should keep on pursuing these things.
Paul lists five pursuits for Timothy—and for us.
5 Pursuits to Follow After
- Pursue righteousness—another word for integrity.
- Pursue godliness—a reverence for God and a hatred for sin. May that always be true of us! Don’t hold loosely your relationship with God. Samson did that and we all know what happened to him as a result. Hold very closely your relationship with Christ.
- Pursue faith—a deliberate refusal to walk by sight. You will be tempted repeatedly to let your sight guide you. You’ll be surrounded by others who will choose to do that. Don’t go there. Trust God . . . lean on Him . . . rely on Him. Have Him fight your battles for you. Have Him clear your mind of things that are disturbing you and distracting you from your calling.
- Pursue love—“seek the highest good of others” (the best definition of love I’ve ever read). Be affectionate in season and out of season. When you feel like it and when you don’t. When you’re younger or when you’re older. When it’s early or when it’s late. When they like you or when they don’t like you. When the church is growing or when your ranks have plateaued. Perseverance in love should mark your life.
- Pursue gentleness—another word for meekness. May you be known as a humble man of God, giving others the credit they deserve and always pushing that credit away from yourself.
Keep on pursuing these things. As you do, you’ll honor God.
Next week, I’ll talk about the right kind of fighting.