NOV 13 / Sunday – Read 2 Timothy 4:9-13
Overview: Besides a snow shovel and warm clothes, what do we need physically—and what do we need spiritually—to be prepared for winter?
14 / Mon – Valuables left behind | Read 2 Timothy 4:13a
Paul wrote this letter while in prison awaiting trial for preaching the gospel. Prisons in those days weren’t known for their amenities. They didn’t let people out on bail, so Paul was not able to retrieve the things he left behind. Instead he asked Timothy to bring them when he came back to Rome. If you were in Paul’s situation, what would you ask your friends to bring you? Why would you choose those specific things? How would they help you?
15 / Tue – Cold weather ahead | Read Exodus 22:25-27 / Matthew 25:38
Do you have a winter coat? If so, you are probably pulling it out in preparation for this season. Paul wasn’t going anywhere so why do you think he asked for his cloak (coat)? One clue is found in the Exodus verses. A person’s wardrobe may be limited to necessities and one item might have to serve several purposes. God provides what we need, including clothes. Have you been blessed? Do you have extras you could share to meet another’s need? Look around.
16 / Wed – Food for now…and then | Read Proverbs 6:6-8 / John 6:35
Food is one of the things people store up for winter by canning, freezing and other methods. The writer of Proverbs reminds readers how wise it is to store up for the future, but what if your reserves get depleted before they can be replenished? And this isn’t just about food for your stomach. Jesus said He was the bread of life. Is your cupboard full but your soul in danger of being malnourished this winter? What could you do to prepare for the season ahead?
17 / Thu – Soul food | Read 2 Timothy 4:13b / Matthew 4:4
Clothes and food are important but so is nourishment for your soul. Paul asked Timothy to also bring his scrolls and parchments. Scrolls were that era’s version of books. Parchments are akin to our writing paper. It seems Paul needed to revisit what others had written to him and also to share his own encouragement with those he could not speak to in person. What ‘scrolls’ are important for you to have this winter? And what ‘parchments’ could you write to those God puts on your heart?
18 / Fri – Cloudy days | Read Psalm 119:105 / John 8:12 / Psalm 89:15 / Ps 36:9
Due to shorter days and less sunlight in the winter, some people are subject to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Their doctor may suggest sitting under a special lamp that recreates the sun’s light for a specific time each day. It can work to reduce the effects of SAD. Although not everyone needs extra light in the winter, everyone does need hope for their soul. Especially during difficult seasons. Where can you find that kind of light? And how can you store it up for emergencies?
19 / Sat – Inexhaustible supply | Read Romans 15:12-13
It is good to be prepared for winter but it is even better when you are so well-stocked you can share with others who have unexpected needs. It could be actual food or clothing or safe shelter. It might be a listening ear or encouraging words on difficult days. A person can live without food for a short time but no one can live long without hope. Will you fill up from the source found in these verses? And will you ask God to give extra to share with those he brings across your path today?