Make every effort to come to me soon. - 2 Timothy 4:9
Paul’s life was soon coming to an end. In his hour of need he makes this appeal to Timothy to come to his side. What strikes me is how he makes this appeal. He does not tell Timothy to “Come or else!” Nor does he say, “If you can make it, please come.” He says, “Make every effort to come to me soon.”
This exhortation I find interesting. Paul was both gracious and strong. On the one hand, he did not demand a certain result (that Timothy be with him.) On the other hand, he was not weak in his appeal. He tells him to “make every effort to come soon.”
Have you ever tried to get people to come to a meeting? If you are in a leadership role, you certainly have experienced the challenge to get maximum participation. If so, you might take a tip from the apostle Paul. On the one hand, you want to honor the members of your group by acknowledging that they can’t always make your meeting. There are often personal reasons for not attending. Or perhaps God has other plans for certain individuals which will prevent them from attending that meeting. If so, it is vital that we respect people following the Lord’s lead. But you also do not want to fall into the trap of thinking that your meeting is unimportant—that this is just one more option on the menu of life for people. Your gathering of people for a small group or a service project or a mission effort is very important. So you might consider using the same language Paul used: “Please make every effort to come to our gathering.” Exhorting people this way preserves respect both for the potential attendees and for you and your meeting.
Paul, the great leader and teacher, was leading and teaching until the end. May we all learn from his example.
Great Commission Churches
One-Year Bible Reading
1 John 5:1-21