“… the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also” (2 Tim 1:5).
My life is the sum of my decisions. This is not to say that the decisions of others have no effect on me, neither are my own decisions made in a vacuum.
While reviewing literature for our Wednesday night adult class, I looked at Tim Lewis’s marvelous book, “The Domino Effect.” The premise of the book is the short and long-term effect that my decisions have on my life and the lives of others.
Lewis began the book by introducing himself through a decision of his father, namely his decision to leave his pursuit of hedonism and return to the Lord and his church after Tim and his brothers were of some age. The father went on to serve as an elder in the church; his mother continues as a Bible class teacher after more than 30 years; he and one brother now serve as gospel preachers, and the third brother is a deacon in the church. All because a man decided to follow Jesus.
Our introduction to Timothy comes from Acts 16, wherein he is presented as a disciple, the son of a Jewish woman who was a Christian, but his father was a Greek.
As Paul speaks of him in our text today, it becomes clear that Timothy was raised in a religiously divided household. We don’t know if his father was an idolater or simply irreligious. But we do know his mother was a Jewish convert who was determined to raise her son properly. It also appears from the text that both his mother and his grandmother were converted during Paul’s first tour through that region.
These women made a conscious decision to leave the religion of their ancestors, a religion that had guided their people for nearly 2000 years. Moreover, they were determined to live according to the precepts of the gospel amidst an incredibly hostile and pagan society.
Finally, Timothy’s mother made the decision to be faithful to the Lord despite her husband’s unbelief. Her story has been repeated innumerable times throughout the years. The consequences of her decision continue to bless the world to this day.