“The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain; but when he arrived in Rome, he sought me out very zealously and found me.” 2 Timothy 1:16-17
The apostle Paul was imprisoned in Rome awaiting a death sentence for preaching the gospel, and most believers in Asia, who previously supported him, deserted him, fearing being arrested by the Romans and tortured.
However, during Paul’s difficult circumstance was a bright light—a man named Onesiphorus. His name means “help bringer.” This man lived out his name. When Paul was deserted by others, Onesiphorus sought him out and refreshed him [v. 16]. He showed Paul kindness and ministered to him. The word “refreshed” means “recover breath.”
Living in a world with sin and the consequences of it, means that we will always need refreshment. We are all negatively affected by trials. The cares of life can easily knock the wind right out of us.
Paul’s friend Onesiphorus went to Rome searching for him at a time when every Christian was trying to get out of it. He put’s his own life at risk to be a “help bringer” to refresh his friend. “A friend loves at all times” [Proverbs 17:17] going the extra mile to help. Onesiphorus searched dungeon after dungeon after dungeon until he found Paul. He had no quit in him, he was determined to find his friend and minister to him.
When refreshing others, many times those hurting are primarily looking for empathy—someone who will stand beside them. They need someone to say, “It’s OK to hurt,” “It’s OK to cry,” and yes, “It’s OK to be honest about how you feel.” That’s what we see in many of the Psalms—honest sharing. But we also see in the Psalms where the writer ultimately says, “BUT GOD.”
The ministry of refreshment is vitally important, we all need it. Purpose in your heart to be a “help bringer,” a bright light in the midst of someone’s darkness.
Much love and care,
Greece Assembly of God
In Partnership with