Speaking to the Soul – April 28

Stay clean

In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honourable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work. 2 Timothy 2:20-21

Here Paul is describing the Church. It is made up of very different people who have a wide variety of roles. Paul’s concern is that Timothy should live in a state of constant readiness for whatever the Lord might want him to do. But he could only do that by keeping himself pure.

Paul had his eyes wide open to the challenges that Timothy would face as a young leader in a non-Christian, and largely anti-Christian, society. He knew Timothy would be tempted to compromise and to slip back into godless ways. And, of course, Paul would say exactly the same to leaders today.

Our society is driven by a lust for money, sex and power in just the same way as Roman society was. It is clearly expressed in completely different ways but the challenge to keep pure is as vital today as it was then. The devil does an amazing job in making purity sound dull and joyless, because the truth is the exact opposite. Purity is the route to living life to the full and Paul was eager that Timothy shouldn’t settle for anything less than the best.

Paul’s prime desire for Timothy was that he should always be ready for the Lord to use him, and I have no doubt that is our greatest desire too. We want our lives to count for something. We want to do things that will be a lasting blessing. Or, to use Paul’s language, we want to be like a household utensil that is ready to be used.

If so, that’s great! But we need to work hard each day to ensure that we stay clean in a polluted society which will try to make us mucky.


What do you do each day to help you to stay clean?


Lord God, help me to live so close to you that I will always be available for you to use. Amen