You are preparing to go on a journey. This might be a missions trip, traveling to a conference, speaking event, or just visiting family. What do you do to get prepared? Do you have a checklist? Do you make sure your techie stuff is arranged? Finalize power points? Wash and press your clothes? Well if you’re anything like me you have done all of these things and more! Probably lost sleep trying to plan everything and make sure every little detail is taken care of. Right?
So for the last couple of months I have been working and preparing for a pretty significant conference. It is a conference in which several international ministries gather together to talk about Bible translation and Bible engagement. This year the focus is on work within SE Asia and so naturally the conference is taking place in SE Asia. Several months back I was charged with the task of organizing the Deaf Group meetings. This at first seemed like a very simple task but of course if you have ever planned a conference you know that is no simple task… Now organize it from several thousand miles away!! Thank the Lord that I have had tons of help from my wonderful team at Deaf Bible and FCBH.
I must have gone through my workshop presentations a thousand times. Planning when I would wash my clothes and start to arrange my luggage. Figuring out which chargers I would be taking and which ball cap to wear on the flight. I don’t know… Just everything that could come to your mind when planning to depart the country for a month, did! It must of been just last Saturday that I felt the Lord speak and He was asking me, “What are you preparing for?” Of course I knew I was preparing for a historic conference to take place in SE Asia. I have been praying and praying for this for months. Surely the Lord knows. However, He continued to press this question upon my heart. I was then directed to 2 Timothy for context.
“1 I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.” – 2 Timothy 4:1-2
This scripture really seemed to hit me hard! I mean this was not a verse that I was not aware of, but I think the Lord really revealed to me some of the context. Maybe not how Paul meant it for Timothy but how the Lord meant it for me. You see, we are always planning. Especially for trips and things like this. However we sometimes get lost in the hustle and bustle of it all and lose sight of what it is we are really trying to accomplish. That is… The GOSPEL! The message of Christ!
I began to think about how much intake of the Word did I have in preparation (compared to all of the other now seemingly insignificant things)?
1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. 4 The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. 5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; 6 for the LORD knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
This Psalm of David shows us how valuable His Word is! How it is in His Word that we can find righteousness. Of course in righteousness there is truth. This is how we build our foundation to know how to speak to others. Meditating on His law (Word) day and night is how we prepare ourselves to be ready in season and out of season.
This doesn’t have to apply to a journey you might take, but this is every day. This is when you are preparing to teach your 5th graders, when you are preparing to go and open the restaurant, preparing your lawn equipment for your landscaping business. His Word is absolutely necessary for our preparations of day to day life. This is how we carry the Gospel forward and this is how we minister the Word to others, not by a set time (in season) but by engaging with others (out of season).
I encourage you that when you are preparing, whatever it may be for. That you walk not in the counsel of the wicked but that you delight in the law of the Lord. That you seek Him through His Word! It is then that you will truly be prepared.