In this day and age, it is sometimes difficult to stand up and acknowledge being a Christian. It seems radical forces have taken over the culture, and distorted reality. When one of good moral standing speaks the truth, it is often shouted down or ridiculed, causing one to be “canceled”.
In all of today’s readings, however, we are being exhorted to stand up for God’s truth and not be ashamed of it.
St. Paul beseeches his beloved spiritual child, Timothy, (whose feast we celebrate today) to stir into flame the gift of the Holy Spirit which St. Paul himself imparted to Timothy through the placing of his hands on the young man’s head. Timothy is encouraged to not be ashamed of testifying to the Lord nor of Paul, but to bear “your share of hardship for the Gospel with the strength that comes from God.”
Paul likened himself to a slave of God and endured countless hardships in his zeal for converting the Jews into belief in Jesus Christ. He knew his time in this world would not last much longer and he strongly wanted Timothy to follow in his footsteps and not give in to a spirit of cowardice.
We, too, are called to do likewise. The responsorial Psalm tells us to “Proclaim God’s marvelous deeds to all the nations!” How do we do this? By living good Christian lives, obeying the Commandments, treating others like we would want to be treated ourselves.
Christ likens us to a lamp, not to be hidden under a bed, but to be placed on a lampstand so that our light will shine forth to all around us; the light of goodness, and purity, and most importantly, the light of truth!