Today I’d like to introduce you to someone that you may not have ever really known much about. His name is Onesiphorus. And I love this man because while he’s a rather obscure person in Scripture, he really for me defines what Christian friendship is really all about.
Listen to what the Bible says about him in the book is second Timothy chapter one, starting with verse number 16. May the Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refresh me and was not ashamed of my chains. But when he arrived in Rome, he searched for me earnestly and found me. May the Lord grant him to find mercy from the Lord on that day. And you well know all the service he rendered at Ephesus.
This was a man who impacted the life of the Apostle Paul. And though he may not be famous, perhaps it was his influence that was the factor that kept Paul going in his time of need.
A couple of things I’d like to point out here in this passage. First of all, it says here in verse 16, that he refreshed me. I hope that when you’re around people, you refresh them. I believe that when we have a good spirit when we have hope, and faith and confidence in the Lord when we are seeing the blessings of God and giving Him praise, we can refresh the spirits of those who may be going through hard times.
Secondly, it says, also in this passage, that he was not ashamed of my chains. I love the fact that he saw Paul’s situation. And then rather than distance himself from him or judge him, he went to him in his time of need, he was not ashamed of his chains. He understood that Paul was doing the will of God and that he simply wanted to be a help to him. And so it says then, that he also searched for me earnestly and found me.
That reminds me of how important it is for us to search out others in their time of need. Sometimes in churches, we don’t see people around, and we just think, well, I’ll let somebody else think about. I want to encourage you, you be the one to search somebody out, give them a call, write them a note, stop by their house, but search them out in their time of need, and you can be an influence like Onesiphorus was in the life of the Apostle Paul.