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Summary: A Mother's Day sermon on the great influence that they...and all of us, have in touching eternity.

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Scripture: 2nd Timothy 1: 5-7; 3: 14-15

1: 5-7 - 5 I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that lived first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, lives in you. 6 For this reason I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; 7 for God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.

3: 14-15 - 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, 15 and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

Good morning.

If I haven’t said it already, ‘Happy Mother’s Day’ to all the mothers that we have here today. I sincerely hope you have a wonderful day, today.

Pause…

“There was a drill sergeant who was frustrated in his efforts to make a soldier out of a certain recruit. This trainee lagged behind on marches, used any excuse to go on sick call, grumbled constantly about the food, and never made his cot up properly.

But one day, one day, a noticeable change took place in this young man's attitude. When someone asked what happened that so changed the soldier's attitude, the drill sergeant explained, "You know, threats and punishment didn't work with him, so I had to resort to the ultimate weapon: I called his mother!"

I’m convinced and truly believe that mother’s have an amazing amount of influence!

I’ve told you before about my mother…and that one simple act of her of kneeling at an altar in front of me some 50 years ago…and how it has affected my life.

That simple spiritual act of kneeling before the Lord in prayer, forced me at that young age, to think about God…it forced me to question…it forced me to make decisions about faith and love and obedience and service.

One simple act of a mother did all of that to a small boy of 14, who now stands in front of you at 64…having answered most of those questions for myself. I have now made those decisions about my faith, about love, about obedience and about service…but it took years of spiritual meditation and reflection to come to where I am today.

Of course, it wasn’t only that one act of my Mother’s…it was her life…the example that she continued to reveal during her lifetime. It was one of a Godly mother…one who had a proper respect for the Lord

And this morning, Mother’s Day, 2012, our scripture declares this same revelation…the influence of Mothers. It reveals the huge influence that Timothy had felt from his mother and grandmother. It was an influence so strong that it shaped his life and living, what he came to believe and ultimately his overall faith.

A Living Faith…

But before anyone can really speak about Timothy and his great influence, they must first look at the faith…the living faith found in his grandmother Lois and his mother Eunice.

A ‘Living Faith’…what is it? What makes a faith come alive? What makes faith in a person so tangible?

I believe that a living faith becomes evident and tangible to others in the things we do and the way we live our lives.

I shared a time with some of you during our Alpha course regarding my mother-in-law, Betty. She is a very Christian woman…in fact, her charity and giving to the church has been questioned several times by the IRS when she files her income tax.

During my time working in Wichita, I would visit her and Kenny, her husband, each day after work before heading back to Winfield. She would always have things for me to eat. While I would eat, she and Kenny would sit with me either visiting or reading the paper.

During one visit, I noticed that Betty had the paper open to where the horoscopes were listed. At that time of my life, I would always be curious as to what the horoscopes said, and so, I asked Betty to read my horoscope to me.

I guess I shouldn’t have done that, because Betty immediately put down the paper and said, ‘If you want to know what the future holds, you should talk with God.’ She then stood up and walked over to where Kenny was at and said, ‘I believe it’s time for you to go.’ You know, I haven’t read much of the horoscopes since that time.

It was a little shocking at the time, and she has forgiven me since then, but as I was thinking about it, it revealed to me her very strong Christian belief and faith in God. It was definitely a very real and living faith…and believe me when I say…at that moment, it was very tangible.

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