Having children of different ages and with varying interests can sometimes be a stretch. How to keep the closeness and help us have a common goal? The most important focus is our faith; so, whatever else we do, we learn and worship together. When we sit down to breakfast each morning, I typically save my meal. Instead, I read to my kids, ages 2-19 from the Bible. Currently, we have been reading from 1 Samuel which is full of action and keeps their attention from day to day. We read from my ESV, not the children’s bible. I just stop often to ask questions, define words, or summarize for the younger children. It is my goal that God’s word will make a deep impression on them and that they learn what they want to imitate or what not to imitate.
Now and then we take a detour in our reading, and this morning was such a time. The US is going through a lot of upheaval. There are people in authority who are seeking to bring changes to law and government, and these changes do not honor God. It is a confusing time for our children who do not understand the shift. The important thing is to remain rooted, knowing that God is still sovereign and that He will work all things together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purposes. (Romans 8:28) And what are we called to do?
Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 5 As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.2 Timothy 4:2-5
Are we not living in such a time? People want to redefine right and wrong by their own desires, in ignorance and evil, yet we are not called to be afraid, but to continue to correct, discipline and encourage with truth. God’s Word is truth. It is the only way to correct our compass.
The kids and I read from Acts 8 this morning. Verses 26-40 talk about Philip, who was the first disciple recorded as doing the work of an evangelist. He was told by an angel exactly where God wanted him to go, in a desert place, and he met an Ethiopian eunuch there. The Spirit told Philip to go join the man’s chariot. When he was obedient, he found the man reading a passage from Isaiah which was prophesying about the suffering Jesus would endure. When he asked the eunuch if he understood what he was reading, the man invited him to explain it to him. This opened the door for Philip to share the gospel of Jesus, beginning with that scripture. The man believed and was baptized by Philip, and then the Spirit of God whisked Philip off to another place. Verse 40 says, “But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he passed through he preached the gospel to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.”
What was our take-away?
When Philip was obedient to join the eunuch’s chariot, he found the man in the Word, full of questions and with a heart posture ready to embrace Jesus as his Lord. Philip didn’t have to convince him. He only had to explain what the scriptures were saying. God’s word spoke for itself and the Holy Spirit did the work of making it fruitful.
God gave me this picture to share with my kids, of crossing a bridge with a sturdy floor, side rails, and a net that extended from the railing up into the sky. You could look out across the railing at what was beyond, but there was no way to fall. No way to misstep. There was complete assurance that the people on the bridge would arrive safely on the other side at the designated place.
And I just felt like the point was that, like Philip, if we are willing to speak truth, God will make our foot steps sure. He will make our appointments, and we know from scripture that God’s word does not return to him void. It always hits the mark.
Be ready in season and out of season. As long as anyone is willing to listen, keep sharing the truth in love, like Philip, wherever God leads. He is always our safety net.
Photos by Pixabay.