Living Under a Microscope
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Are there any science nerds out there? Does anyone remember learning how to use a microscope in biology class? We were empowered to inspect those tiny cells of life smeared on a tiny glass plate. Or maybe you auditioned for a part in a play, or some other type of performance? You diligently prepared for the big moment, and it was quite exhilarating. All eyes were on you!
In 1 Timothy 4, the Apostle Paul tells of one disciple encouraged to live his life “under the microscope,” or on the “stage of life.” Could this exhortation apply to the rest of us? Let us look at it:
Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching. Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given to you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you. Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers (1 Timothy 4:13-16 ESV).
Did you catch it? He wrote, “so that all may see your progress.” This sage exhortation serves us well. In a sense, we’re living life under a microscope. Scientists have learned valuable information through microscopic research. Another way to understand this is to see oneself as on the stage called life. What we do matters to God, our family, and our community. Others are affected by our personal decisions.
I remember one of my siblings being quite disturbed because I did not go to law school when accepted (back when the dinosaurs roamed). This was a classic “microscopic” moment in time. I had no idea she had held this thing so tightly (it was my life, right?). She saw something in me that I did not. I will always love her for it!
We do live in glass houses! The earth is not as big as we once thought (thanks to high-speed internet). Not only are we to live for God, but other believers need to see our progress as we follow Christ through both the good and the more challenging times of our lives. Discipleship may cost us something! It takes time to read Scripture regularly and to exercise all those God-given gifts like exhortation and teaching. Nor does progress happen all by itself. We have a great responsibility to persist! Are you up for the challenge?
Let’s pray. Father, we come boldly to You today. Help us lead lives worthy of the amazing calling we have in Christ Jesus. Strengthen us to walk upright before You, to serve You with joy and gladness. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!
Scripture is quoted from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®). ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. The ESV® text has been reproduced in cooperation with and by permission of Good News Publishers. Unauthorized reproduction of this publication is prohibited. All rights reserved.
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