No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. 2 Timothy 2:4
Wow! This is quite a vivid picture and one worth considering for a minute. Imagine being enlisted in the military, called up to active duty. Think about how you would prepare for that. You would have your family, friends, finances, faith and fitness in order. You would be sure that there was nothing left undone in your civilian life. You would have all loose ends tied up so you would not to be distracted from your full-time active service to your country. Many times, when called to active duty, you are required to move out of state or even out of the country. You cannot leave any lingering responsibilities or obligations. You must be focused on your mission, and you are set apart for it by moving your life to a base where you are stationed.
Imagine now if you are serving in your active-duty position, but you left your family where they were with unfinished business that you were still trying to conduct. As you focus on your military mission being part of a unit working together on that mission, you are being distracted because you are still trying to keep up with managing your responsibilities back home. This is not going to please your commanding officer. He is going to tell you to get your head in the game or don’t come back until you can give your full attention to the job you have signed up to do.
Do you see a parallel in this scenario? We have been called up to active duty by our Commanding officer, the Head of the church, the Lord Jesus! We have a mission that we are assigned to. However, many of us are unaware that we are on a mission and have our focus on the concerns and cares of civilian (natural) life. We have let the distractions of activity, entertainment, politics and etc. become the dominate focus of our world, forgetting that this is not what pleases the One who called us.
In today’s scripture, Paul is telling Timothy to toughen up and persevere through the hard times, just like a good soldier on mission would do. When He is on His mission, he is not looking around at what he can do to fill his time. He is focused on the mission at hand, and he is focused on carrying out the orders of the commander because they are on the same mission together. This pleases the commander. The more he can trust his soldiers to carry out their assignments, the more pleased he is and them more he can depend on his troops when they are in the battle.
Today I want to encourage you to not be entangled/caught up in the cares and concerns of this world. We do live here but we do not have to have the same mind set. This is a temporary assignment and will soon be over. I don’t want to be the one with all the excuses at the end of the mission as to why the mission was not completed, not to mention the many lives that were lost because my heart was someplace else. Become mission minded today and put away the distraction and cares of this life. Begin by settling your business with the world. Tie up any loose ends such as unhealthy relationships, debts, time-wasting hobbies and addictive habits. Then turn your focus to getting your assignment. Spend time connecting with the Commander, the Head of the church each day and offer your life up for service. Begin your training and grow into your mission by spending time in the “play book” (scripture) and make your focus to be the reason you on in this world. We are in a war here, so let’s get untangled from the heaviness of life and fight the good fight of faith we have been call to.
Today’s scripture reading: 2 Timothy 2:1-7
1You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
2 And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
3 You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
4 No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.
5 And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules.
6 The hardworking farmer must be first to partake of the crops.
7 Consider what I say, and may the Lord give you understanding in all things.