Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. (1 Timothy 4:12)
Paul wrote these words to Timothy because Timothy’s age appears to be the one thing most likely to hinder him in ministry.
Chances are, it was more of a stumbling block to Timothy than to anyone else. Regardless, it was an obstacle that could be overcome with action: Being a living example of the person God calls us to be, Paul said, will get you past whatever whatever limitations you may think you have.
If Paul were writing to you today, how would finish this verse? “Don’t let anyone look down on you because …”
Because you’re old? Because you’re different? Because of your race or gender? Because you lack education or financial resources? Because you have a past? Because you’re less than perfect?
Which things, real or imagined, stand between you and your ability to be the leader God has called you to be?
Today is the day to put them aside. Focus instead on being the person God called you to be. Focus instead, today specifically, on being an example for others.
In spite of your perceived limitations, you can still show others how this life is to be lived. As The Message phrases this verse…
Teach believers with your life: by word, by demeanor, by love, by faith, by integrity.
Whatever your limitations may appear to be, they cannot stand in the way of your commitment to be a living example of God’s presence in your life.