The reading from the Second Letter to Timothy offers the exhortation to “stir into flame the gift of God” and live with conviction and courage. This gift is our Christian faith; and just as a tiny spark can produce a bonfire, so too, our faith can provide the spiritual spark that ignites our lives for service in the world as we draw near to the Lord and one another.
Jesus reminds us that just as we pay attention to the signs of the weather, so we also respond to the signs within our heart. St. Paul carries this point further as he recognizes sin and calls upon the Lord for the strength to live in faith.
These two great saints made an enormous impact in the Church, even as they encountered hard work and confronted their own weaknesses and sins. May we look to their example and trust in the Lord for the grace we need to face the challenges of life.
In the first reading today we hear of the conversion of St. Paul, who begins the passage “breathing murderous threats” against the Church and ends with his preaching in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God. May Paul’s change of heart inspire us to draw ever nearer to the Lord!
St. Paul’s conversion shows how God calls us to make changes in our lives as we draw close to Jesus Christ and proclaim the Good News. The Lord reaches out to us in our weakness, inspiring us to turn away from our sins and become living witnesses to the world.