Thursday, February 7, 2013

What Do People See In You?

Do you have Christian parents? Then you should praise the Lord for them. Although you cannot have a saving relationship with Jesus through your parents' faith, a difference has been made in your life because they are believers. They have spent years teaching you by word and deed what it is to follow Jesus. Perhaps you didn't realize it but everything they did and how they did it was teaching you about their faith in God.

I am not claiming your parents are perfect examples, no one is, but they at least instilled in you the knowledge that there is something greater in your life than what you see. Your faith and trust in Jesus was shaped ever since you could understand and interpret your parents actions and words. Jesus was shining through them to plant seeds in you so that when he made himself known to you, there was a foundation already in place.

As apostle Paul remembered his friend Timothy, his friends faith came to mind. Timothy was remarkable from the beginning. From the very first request from Paul, Timothy showed he was willing to do whatever it took to serve Jesus. Having been invited to come along with Paul and Silas, Timothy obeyed Paul's request and was circumcised. According to our faith this ceremony is no longer needed but Timothy did it due to the fact Paul ministered at the synagogues of the towns they visited. This was a step of sincere faith and Timothy never looked back. And who does Paul credit such a good foundation to?

I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. (2 Timothy 1)

As I said at the beginning, the source of faith is Jesus Christ, but examples of it are seen in the people we surround ourselves with. It is important for parents to understand that taking a child to church is a good thing but setting an example for their child is still their responsibility. It goes beyond kindness and good manners. It goes beyond respecting people and teaching right from wrong. Parents must demonstrate a sincere faith. Trust in Jesus is seen in the face of trying circumstances. Parents of faith do not allow worry and fear to change their behaviour or to act poorly to others. They show that when times are tough we do not find the solution in our but we bring it all to Jesus.

How we react shows our children the sincerity of our faith. What are our children seeing in us? I don't mean in the good days. Any person can smile when the sun is out. Any person can make a show of it in public. It is our children who get to see our private face. It is our children who first see our reaction to the stresses of life.  It is our children who see the inconsistencies and question how much we really believe what we say.

We need to praise the Lord for our parents who set a good example for us in what it is to trust Jesus. We also must be determined to set that example for our children. When they think of us do they think "My parents love and trust Jesus"? If someone asks them to describe you in a word, will "faith" come to mind? That's a good question to ask regardless of being a parent or not. If someone asked one of your friends to describe you in a word, what would that word be?

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