“This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time. And for this purpose I was appointed a herald and an apostle—I am telling the truth, I am not lying—and a true and faithful teacher of the Gentiles.” 1 Timothy 2:3-7
Many of us are working hard to secure our future financially. We work crazy hours week in and week out just to position ourselves to retire after 30 or 40 years with high hopes of being financially secure. We work hard everyday not just because we have to but because we want to model for our young people how to be responsible, and dependable. It is true that we work because we have to pay bills but I am sure that there is more to it for you than that, at least I hope that it is. Either way we know that today’s youth play a huge role in our future, so we have to shape their minds and hearts to be prepared.
What about working hard to secure our future spiritually? While we are going through our daily routine, how much attention are we giving to what God has called us to do? Here the Apostle Paul was talking to young Timothy helping to prepare him to live for Christ. He was training young Timothy on how to be a great leader that not only others can trust but one that God can trust.
When we think about the full knowledge of God, who really qualifies to share the truth and how does the youth today know how to identify those individuals? When I read 1 Timothy 1 it brings me to accept the actuality that just like Paul, I too am one of the worst of sinners but by the grace of God He has considered me trustworthy and appointed me to His service. We are all in that same position so our approach to helping these young people know and understand the truth should be taken from these pages in 1Timothy.
We have to be a Paul to these young Timothy’s and help them understand that they are like Timothy or help them grow to desire to be like Timothy. This is where identity comes in. When you look at the text above if we share it from the right context I believe that we can turn on the light to letting these young people know that they too are included in God’s plans. The Bible says that God wants all not just some people. God wants these young people to come into knowing the full knowledge of the truth which is made so clear in versus 5 and 6 above.
We have to help these young people recognize who they really are in Christ and how to discern who has been appointed to God’s service so that they can be discipled. We have to dedicate the same time if not more to truly make a major impact on the lives of the youth for Christ sake as we do trying to secure our financial future. We have to help them see that when they interact with us it is not by accident, it is an appointment by God (the proper time) for them to grow to know who they really are in Jesus Christ. Equally important, they have to understand that God appointed us to lead them to that truth and they have to see how much we value Jesus by the way we represent His name.
Don’t forget that while we are securing our financial future, we have to invest in our youth to secure our future spiritually as well.
Jesse R. Watson Jr.