But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness."
1 Timothy 6:11
What are we to flee?
"...controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions and constant friction...
1 Timothy 6:4b-5a
... Righteousness... I need to run to God's Word for the answers.
Godliness... What would Christ do in this situation?
... Faith... Fear, doubt, worry, stress... I need to turn every worry over to the one who hears and cared enough to die for my sins - every other concern pales in comparison to that. Even when I am working to do the right thing, and all my strength and effort is poured into this life and all the toil that we must face, my God is the one that I lean on.
Love... How do I love my parents, siblings, friends, and future mate with unconditional love? A love that does not treat them like dirt... a love that listens... a love that does not expect anything in return... a love that never raises its voice in anger, even when you are verbally trashed, day after long, endless day. This kind of love will keep on loving, even when there is no end to personal hurt.
... Endurance... When hope is hard to hold on to, when you think that no guy will come along who will see into your closely guarded heart and treasure what he finds - a love for God, and a different countenance from those witty, cool, beautiful girls that the world is full of. Perseverance to go on living and working in a world that is falling apart at the seams, and you're one of the few who remain to hold things together while the rest go blindly off the edge of a cliff of our own making.
and Gentleness... "Make every effort to live in peace with all men... Heb. 12:14". Living among my neighbors in quietness, simplicity and humility. Not raising a ruckus at every little problem that I see in other people, but taking the log out of my own eye first. Meekly listening to what other's have to say, without blurting out my opinions. Being teachable. Friendly. Gracious and bearing with others' shortcomings, knowing that I will receive an even stricter judgment.
"Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth"
Funny how you can pursue all these things, and yet be still before God.
It's a kind of heart stillness, that gives the controls over to the Mighty One and walks always one step behind Him as He breaks new ground. Always listening to His voice, not worry, noise or busyness.
"Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."