O is for Onesiphorus
Commitment has fallen on hard times. Researcher George Barna wrote, “Commitment is viewed negatively because it limits our ability to feel independent… and to focus upon self gratification rather than helping others .” But commitment was not always this weak and self-centered.
Paul was in prison for the final time. The last letter he ever wrote was to young Timothy, and in it he praised the commitment of a man you and I know virtually nothing about— Onesiphorus.
NAME: “What Brings Profits”
DATE: 1st Century AD
IDENTIFICATION: Christian from Ephesus who ministered to Paul in prison
STORY LINE: Onesiphorus eagerly searched for Paul and found him
READ IT IN THE BIBLE: 2 Timothy 1:8-18
Think of what Paul highlights about Onesiphorus ‘commitment in 2 Timothy 1:16-18. This obscure man proves that true commitment demands consistency. Onesiphorus “often refreshed” the apostle Paul, first in Ephesus and now in Rome. Whatever that means, Onesiphorus did it consistently.
True commitment demands initiative. Onesiphorus came to Rome to find Paul. “He sought me out,” Paul says. Commitment always begins with the subject, not the object. If the object (your spouse, your church, your Savior) is worthy of commitment, they will be worthy whether you are committed to them or not.
True commitment demands determination. Paul’s friend sought him out very zealously until he “found” him. Onesiphorus could easily have given up, but he wasn’t going to be content to hear the Savior say, “Well tried, good and faithful servant.” He wanted “Well done!”
What are you committed to today? Does your commitment exhibit qualities of Onesiphorus? If not, reexamine the quality of your commitment and do whatever the Spirit of God tells you. Just because commitment has fallen on hard times doesn’t mean it can’t flourish in you.