July 2, 2021
2 Timothy 4:6-8
For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.
What was the best trip you ever took? And why do you call it the best?
I grew up blessed enough to go on periodic trips and vacations with family or friends. And among the usual high points one expects from a road trip, I also experienced my share of vacation low points – getting very sick, or snowed in by a blizzard, or unexpectedly dumped by my girlfriend on our romantic hiking trip. And I could go on.
But the funny thing is, when I look back I wouldn’t trade the events of any of those trips, not for anything. It’s true that what happened didn’t seem ideal at the time. But when I gaze over my life so far, I begin to see how much those events fit into the tapestry which God is lovingly weaving in me. Every trip I took, every event (good or bad), they’ve all been meaningful in one way or the other. They make me smile. They are part of me, and God has used them to make me who I am today. (Just as He has with you!)
In our passage, the Apostle Paul is reflecting at the end of his own road, in one of the last epistles he will ever write. Paul took a lot of road trips himself, and he had a lot more to complain about than I ever will! He was beaten, stoned, shipwrecked multiple times, jailed, often harassed and constantly threatened. And yet I wonder if now, at the end of his life, Paul might look back at all his road trips, shake his head, laugh and marvel at all the Lord has done in him and through him. Yes, there were great difficulties and frustrations. But overall, what an amazing trip that life has been!
What was the best trip you ever took? What challenging things did you experience on that trip, or other trips? How has God helped you grow through it all, through the good and the seemingly not-so-good?
What a wonderful God we serve, who always comes along on all our road trips!