Someone once told me that the ‘best and worst thing about pastoring a church will be the people’. From what he writes here, it would seem that Paul agrees.
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.
Paul will go on to say that these times of difficulty will come from people (v.2), but for the new minister Timothy this is what he needed to know first;
that as time progresses the times will get progressively more difficult.
This should not be a surprise to us, that as time goes on time gets tougher. Time of difficulty carries the meaning of stressful times, times of trial, times of tribulation…think of trying to swim in a sea that is wild, windy, and wavy. No matter which way Timothy turns, there will be difficult people to minister to.
It seems like Paul wanted to communicate this to Timothy so that he was going forward in his task with his eyes open, so to speak, knowing that people are difficult.
People are difficult, people are broken, and people are in desperate need of the saving grace of God.
If we are honest, so are we.
We are difficult to love, we are broken past the point of self-repair, and we are in desperate need of the saving grace of God.
Pastor, these are your people; difficult, broken, in need of grace.
Friends, this is all of us; difficult, broken, in need of grace.
The answer for both is the same – the free gift of grace available to us through faith in Jesus. Paul will go on to remind Timothy that the Word of God makes us wise for salvation (v.15), and it is on this solid foundation that we must stand as we seek to navigate these times of difficulty. People are broken, you are broken, and without the Word of God to stand on and soak in, this will never change.
Turn to the Word today!