I love these verses because Paul is talking to Timothy as a Christian and a pastor at the same time. How can Timothy grow as a leader, grow in confidence? How can we?
By focusing on his faith, having integrity, watching his teaching and doctrine, and training in godliness – that keeps him strong in God, and lets him be an example to others (vv.8, 9, 16).
By doing the work God has called Timothy to, working hard, and using the gifts God has given (vv.6, 14, 15) – this leads to fruit that he can see in himself, and others can see as well.
By stepping up and teaching others to walk with God, standing up for himself, not wasting time on useless arguments but correcting others who are not teaching the truth – this is taking your inner faith and seeing it make a difference for the Kingdom of God, being an instrument in God’s hands (vv.6, 7, 10, 11, 12, 16).
Growing in faith and growing in confidence and strength go together – the closer I walk with Jesus our Lord, the more strength I have for ministry – because He is the strength of my life, and the source of my confidence. His love is all I need.
A Good Servant of Christ Jesus
6If you explain these things to the brothers and sisters,c Timothy, you will be a worthy servant of Christ Jesus, one who is nourished by the message of faith and the good teaching you have followed. 7Do not waste time arguing over godless ideas and old wives’ tales. Instead, train yourself to be godly. 8“Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come.” 9This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it. 10This is why we work hard and continue to struggle,d for our hope is in the living God, who is the Savior of all people and particularly of all believers.
11Teach these things and insist that everyone learn them. 12Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. 13Until I get there, focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers, and teaching them.
14Do not neglect the spiritual gift you received through the prophecy spoken over you when the elders of the church laid their hands on you. 15Give your complete attention to these matters. Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress. 16Keep a close watch on how you live and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right for the sake of your own salvation and the salvation of those who hear you.