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Saints Timothy and Titus, Bishops
God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. (2 Timothy 1:7)
That’s quite a spirit, isn’t it? It’s the spirit that sustained Timothy and Titus through arduous missionary journeys with Paul. It enabled them to preach the gospel effectively and to play a major role in the direction of the early Church. Both of these men lived extraordinary, difficult, and generous lives—true heroes of the faith!
As disciples of Paul, Timothy and Titus were instrumental in spreading the gospel throughout Macedonia. Timothy led the church at Ephesus, becoming its first bishop in ad 64. He was stoned to death around ad 95 because he tried to stop a procession to the goddess Diana.
Titus is known best for his pastoral skills. Paul relied on him to help bring unity to the divided church in Corinth, and later he sent him to Crete to help the struggling church there. Titus is also credited with evangelizing the region of Dalmatia, in modern-day Croatia. He is said to have died peacefully on Crete, when he was around ninety years old.
But today’s feast is not meant just to admire these two men. God wants us to imitate them as well. After all, the same spirit of power, love, and self-control has been given to us, too. It’s the Holy Spirit!
Few of us are called to serve as Timothy and Titus did, but we can still testify to the gospel wherever we are. It may mean caring for an elderly parent, being patient with a difficult child or a wearisome neighbor, or working faithfully at our everyday tasks. It doesn’t have to look heroic in order to be heroic. Any time we rely on God’s power, love, and self-control, we can make the ordinary parts of our lives extraordinary.
Timothy, Titus, and all the saints show us that God wants to be a part of our lives. They tell us that he wants to take everything that appears ordinary and make it extraordinary. What a marvelous, generous God we serve!
“Holy Spirit, thank you for giving me a share in your power, love, and self-control! Come and fill me, as you filled Timothy and Titus, so that my life can become extraordinary.”
Psalm 96:1-3, 7-8, 10
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