Summary: A mother’s greatest work is that of instilling the knowledge of Christ into their children
A MOTHER’S GREATEST WORK
I. TIMOTHY - A FAITHFUL SERVANT
A. Won to Christ under the ministry of Paul - a beloved son
B. A faithful friend - followed Paul on every missionary journey, made special trips to visit Paul
C. A faithful servant - shy and timid but willing to step to the plate when needed, traveled to struggling churches to help out
II. TIMOTHY’S HERITAGE
A. Father a gentile, mother a Jew
B. Timothy was not born a Christian - something had been sown into the fabric of his being from his childhood
-2 Tim 3:14-15 But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
-this played an important part in his conversion
C. Timothy had a genuine, sincere faith
-started in his grandmother, passed to his mother and himself
III. TRAIN A CHILD IN THE WAY IT SHOULD GO
A. Prov 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
B. This has been God’s plan since the beginning
-Exod 10:2 And that thou mayest tell in the ears of thy son, and of thy son’s son, what things I have wrought in Egypt, and my signs which I have done among them; that ye may know how that I am the LORD.
C. The testimony of God’s greatness and goodness is to be handed from one generation to the next
Ps 78:5-7 For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children: That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children: That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments:
-will the circle be unbroken - I don’t want to be the one to break the family circle
IV. FRANKLIN GRAHAM - A MODERN DAY EXAMPLE
A. Sent to boarding school -"Whatever was expected of the student body, I wanted to do the opposite. I got a kick out of staying one step ahead of the law." If Billy was the ultimate preacher, then Franklin made a run at being the ultimate preacher’s kid: fighting, taunting the police into high-speed car chases and cultivating a fascination for firearms, rock music and a taste for hard liquor
B. Didn’t want to identify with Christianity - "I prayed and attended church, but I found the things in the world pleasurable and fun, and I didn’t like being around Christian people."
C. His life was still empty -"Something was missing. There was an emptiness you can’t explain. There wasn’t that joy; there wasn’t that fulfillment."
D. His encounter with reality -"You can’t continue to play the middle ground. Either you’re going to choose to follow and obey him or reject him."
E. His conversion (several days later in a motel room)
-he read Rom 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus
-"I put my cigarette out and got down on my knees beside my bed."
F. His mother’s influence
-His father, always off on a crusade, was a distant, if benevolent presence. The boy’s rearing was left largely to his spirited mother Ruth.
V. A MOTHER’S GREATEST WORK
A. Poem - The Heart of a Child
THE HEART OF A CHILD
Whatever you write on the heart of a child,
no water can wash away.
The sands may be shifted when billows are wild
and the efforts of time may decay.
Some stories may perish, some songs be forgot,
but this engraved record, time changes it not.
Whatever you write in the heart of a child
a story of gladness or care---
that heaven has blessed or that earth has defiled,
will linger unbearably there.
Who writes it has sealed it forever and aye.
He must answer to God on that great judgment day.
B. The greatest work a mother can do is instill the knowledge of God into the child’s life