There are two ways to enter a pool: cannonball or creep. Those who creep endure a slow, inch-by-excruciating-inch torture of cold water on their feet, ankles, legs, knees, etc. and usually complain loudly at each step of the way until they finally put their heads under and exclaim, “It’s alright once you get in!” Those who jump right in skip the torture in a split-second shock … and usually splash (and annoy) those creeping in.
This is how it is with a living out of our faith (1 Timothy 4:15-16).
I. Revelation 3:15-16. We’ve all been around those who have truly realized the gospel, obeyed it, and then been “on fire” for God. If we’re ones creeping into our Christian walk, then we might have even found ourselves splashed with a little more church or Jesus than we’re acclimated to. Paul’s advice to Timothy is immerse himself into His Christian walk. God does not like lukewarm Christianity!
II. James 3:1. Even the first duty of someone seeking to be a shepherd over God’s flock is to watch himself first (Acts 20:28-31). That is Paul’s next piece of advice to the young evangelist, but it is not just for ourselves that we pay careful attention to how we walk. We also are to be careful of what we teach to make sure that whether in word or deed we do all according to God’s Word (Colossians 3:17).
III. James 1:2-12. Anyone can do right as an event (even a stopped clock is right twice a day), but it takes someone truly committed to walking as Jesus did (1 John 2:6) to persist in living out God’s Word. If we persevere, Paul tells Timothy that he will save both himself and his hearers.
This doesn’t happen by those inching their way into their Christian walk. It’s time to cannonball in!