2 Timothy 1:3-7 I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Tonight, I’m doing my devotions in a hotel room in Durham NC. We’re here with our son and his family because our 5 month old granddaughter has serious health issues and is being seen at a children’s hospital here by several specialists. It’s a scary time and knowing that this baby is not only not gaining weight but has been losing it is worrisome to say the least. I’ve found myself drawn tonight to this passage in Scripture where Paul discusses Timothy’s heritage and worry.
It’s so encouraging to know that God honors us when we bring our children up in the fear of the Lord. Lois and Eunice are two quiet heroes of the Bible, but being a mom and a grandmother, I love to look at their example. They provided Timothy with a good family and solid spiritual teaching. God used a believing parent and a believing grandparent to fashion a leader of His new church. What an awesome but exciting prospect. When we were raising our sons and women who worked outside the home would ask me what I did, I would reply, “I’m a trainer of future world leaders.” J Now, even though I work outside the home, I still see helping my grandchildren become leaders as part of my calling in life.
Verse 7 is a powerful verse for me. I’ve turned to it time and time again when I find myself feeling worried or frightened by possible troubles or negative outcomes. Worry seems to be a natural first reaction to an uncertain situation, but to persist in worry reveals a lack of trust in God. He is in charge. Besides, He’s not given believers a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. How I love this verse! Power helps us have enough character and confidence in any situation. Love helps us to graciously deal with difficult people and who doesn’t run into their share of difficult people in difficult times? A sound mind helps us remain self-controlled and self-disciplined no matter what happens. These gifts are meant to replace worry for us. What a gracious, loving God we serve!
God graciously provides for us time and time again, preparing the way. I saw His hand tonight when we checked into the hotel. The desk clerk was talking to another guest while we politely waited. After the other guest left, the clerk apologized for making us wait and then she went on to explain that she was a home school mom and the guest was asking questions about home schooling. I told the clerk we certainly understood as we had home schooled our sons through high school. We chatted for a minute or two and then, as she went to check us in, she commented that there was a reservation for another Harrison family coming in tonight. We laughed and told her that it was our son and his family.
At that point, she graciously moved our room assignments so that we might be close together then asked why we were here. After explaining just a bit, she worked through the hotel’s system to get us all a nice discounted rate. After we came to our room, she called, asked for our granddaughter’s name and then said she was going to pray for her diligently and then offered the name and number of a doctor who ahd helped her with a similar problem wth her son. For me this was just a powerful reminder that God is in control and is preparing the way at this difficult and uncertain time. He has not given me a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind.