Monday, May 12, 2014

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Communion with Risen Christ in daily life
“Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David… This is my gospel…” (V.8)
Having a baby changes everything.  Once your precious child is born, life never seems to go back to how it was before.  Your focus becomes this tiny child – If he’s hungry, you stop what you are doing to feed him. If he’s crying, you run to pick him up and figure out what’s wrong. If he’s uncomfortable, you stand, and rock and hum for hours if needed to help him sleep. Even when you’re hungry, tired, sleep deprived, or irritable – you somehow find it in you to care for this little one.  And somehow after all that, the tiniest smile from your baby seems to make it all worthwhile.  In fact, a few decades ago, they used to call the first 6 weeks after delivery the mom’s “confinement” because basically she had to stay home and focus on nothing else other than her baby.  And maybe because of that intense time, you come out absolutely in love with this child.  The one characteristic that I think of for this time in a mom or dad’s life is “Single-mindedness”  - and that is what this passage is about. 
Paul is in prison writing to his ‘spiritual son’ Timothy to encourage him to endure.  The examples he gives are not exactly the new mom example but similar.  1. A soldier refusing to get involved in civilian affairs to stay focused on his commanding officer.  2. An athlete training and following every rule to achieve his crown.  3. A farmer working hard through the harvest to reap his crop.  Each one requires “single-mindedness” or FOCUS.   So what do we need to be focused on as Christians?   The answer is in verse 8 – “Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David… This is my gospel..”  ‘Jesus Christ RISEN’ is the gospel – the good news – that we should all be focused on.  If Jesus is risen, that means God has won over sin!  Jesus RISEN means there is hope for help in this life and hope for life beyond the grave!  We need to focus on that - and focus often means giving up other less important things.  Money, Power, Reputation, Comforts and even Family are less important and less satisfying than God!  
When we first become parents, we give up a lot for the precious child in our life. As we become Christians, we too might need to give up a lot, but it is for THE Precious One in our life.  In this time of trial in Timothy’s life, Paul urges him to Remember Jesus – to think about Him often, and to stay “single-minded”  - focused. 
Prayer: Dear Lord, help me today to remember you often.  Help me to see and know you more- and there let me find strength to stay focused on you till this race is finished. 
Thought for the day: The more we serve Christ , the less we will serve ourselves.  

Betsy Mathew