“As for you, always be sober, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, carry out your ministry fully. As for me, I am already being poured out as a libation, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. From now on there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have come to love (τοῖς ἠγαπηκόσι) his appearing (τὴν ἐπιφάνειαν αὐτοῦ).” (2 Tim 4: 5-8)
In the final words of this passage, the Apostle reveals the motivation for his entire journey of “fighting the good fight” and “keeping the faith.” His entire journey, for which he is about to receive “the crown of rightousness,” has stemmed from love. St. Paul came to love the Lord’s “epiphany” or appearance. This, he is saying to Timothy, is the foundation of “the work of an evangelist,” and everything that comes with it: “always being sober” and “enduring suffering” and “carrying out ministry.”
My Lord Jesus Christ “appears” or reveals Himself in different, specific ways and times to each of us, just as He revealed Himself in a unique way to Saul, when he was in the middle of zealously persecuting Christians. And the youthful Pharisee, Saul, was immediately struck, even blinded, with love for the Person of Jesus Christ, Who thus interrupted Saul’s misguided zeal.
Today let me open up to Christ’s “epiphanies” to me, in the midst of whatever I am doing. Let me let Him interrupt any misguided ambition or attitude, be it self-centeredness, anxiety, or misguided desire, and embrace His love. It calls me to true fulfilment, sometimes through other people, sometimes through situations, sometimes through my own emptiness. “Come and abide in us,” I say to His Spirit today, opening up to the One Who has opened up to Me, in His loving epiphany.