My phone alarm wakes me up each morning. After I turn off the alarm, I usually read something to help me wake up. For some reason, it’s way easier to check Instagram or Facebook or my email than it is to start reading the Bible :-/. But I can’t handle what’s going on in the world (or in my own life, for that matter) without the perspective that God’s Word offers. My reading this morning was a timely reminder:
“You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, my persecutions and sufferings that happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, and at Lystra—which persecutions I endured; yet from them all the Lord rescued me. Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.
But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:10-17 ESV, emphasis added)
Two things stand out to me here:
It’s easy to get discouraged. Life is challenging. It’s hard to keep up with everyone and everything that seems important. Evil people seem to be getting their way.
But I love Paul’s encouragement to Timothy: You’re a Christian. Keep on living like one. Remember what you’ve been taught from God’s Word.
God’s Word gives us perspective and hope, making us “complete, equipped for every good work.”
Paul could only make this appeal to Timothy because he had been taught faithfully by his godly mother and grandmother (2 Tim. 1:5). He knew God’s Word from his childhood.
I want my children to be able to look back ten or twenty years from now, and to say that they have been well-acquainted with God’s Word from their childhood, just as Timothy was. How else will they be able to stand strong in a culture that increasingly moves away from Jesus?
I’m encouraged to keep reading God’s Word to my children, and to study and memorize it together. It’s hard work. But as God uses us and our patient, persistent efforts today, over time our children will “grow wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.”
May God give us strength today to persevere!