There is the simple but essential role that the confidence of mother plays. Confidence, con fide from the Latin, "with faith." Paul wrote, "I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that lived first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, lives in you."
A huge part of the Federal Budget is spent on the pathology produced by families who do not do this job. The family and church, which is nothing more than families gathered together, remain the most effective department of health, education, and welfare. And the seedbed of life-giving faith.
The rarest commodities in our time are silence and solitude. These have become so rare that we have become suspicious of those who enjoy them--and worry about our children if they seem inclined to be alone for very much of the time. Any excuse is acceptable for not showing up at a party, except, "I need a little time for myself alone."
The Christian life is not easy. We should not be surprised when we find opposition or disapproval for out faith. One of the marks of the Christian Church, according to Luther and the Reformers was not only God's Word purely preached and the sacraments right administered, but suffering.
I know a man who left his children furniture he'd made; and a saintly grandmother whose children treasure her quilts. You're sure to leave behind a legacy. The question is how lasting will it be, and how beneficial? For Christians, I can't think of a greater legacy than to have helped others come to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
The point of Bible study is not for you to collect pearls of wisdom to savor and enjoy, but to "preach the word, in season and out." It's not to make you a saint, but to equip you to "do the work of an evangelist and so fulfill your ministry."
Timothy is what we hope for our children today – that from the earliest days of childhood, they'll know themselves to be children of God. Horace Bushnell, a 19th Century Congregational minister said it best: "A child should grow up as a Christian and never know himself as otherwise."
Our conscience—our intuition—is only as trustworthy as its training. People do terrible things without a bad conscience, because they have not learned the difference between right and wrong—good and evil. An untrained conscience is not a trustworthy monitor. An untrained intuition is not a trustworthy guide.
If we know the Bible, it has great power to help us when we need help the most. It can help us through every crisis--if we know it. If we don't know it, it is like gold buried under the beach. We can't spend gold until we find it and dig it up. We can't use the Bible to help us through difficult times until we open its pages and learn what it says.
What spiritual disciplines do you observe? Do you read your Bible daily? Do you take time to pray? Are you intentional about doing good deeds for others? You have to be disciplined if you expect to lead a life of faith. You have to be on your toes ready to respond when a crisis occurs, to know what to do and what to say when all hell breaks loose.