2 Timothy 3:14—4:5 (NRSV)
Verse 14But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, Verse 15and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Verse 16All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, Verse 17so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work.
Chapter 4In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I solemnly urge you: Verse 2proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favorable or unfavorable; convince, rebuke, and encourage, with the utmost patience in teaching. Verse 3For the time is coming when people will not put up with sound doctrine, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own desires, Verse 4and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander away to myths. Verse 5As for you, always be sober, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, carry out your ministry fully.
I really enjoy being right. By exclusively seeking discourse that reinforces my thinking, I convince myself I am right! My "itching ears" result in echo chambers where I "accumulate for [myself] teachers to suit [my] own desires." Nowadays, it is easy to surround ourselves persistently with like-minded "myths."
However, God persistently speaks truth to me through people with life experiences and, therefore, insights that are different from my own. Consequently, I often must admit I am wrong. Although being wrong is not enjoyable, these insights are truth-filled, life-changing blessings.
Recently, I communicated with one of my most significant teachers, my confirmation pastor, Rev. Arlen Hermodson. We discussed the necessity of persistently returning to God's Word to determine what is true and righteous. The Word's teachings are persistent — love God and love our neighbor. We cannot find truth in self-serving echo chambers. We find truth in God's persistent Word of love.
God of truth, thank you for each of the teachers who instruct us in your Word. Guide us to seek your truth through all your children and to persistently live out your Word of love. Amen.