rebuke, correct, and encourage with great patience and teaching. 2 Timothy 4:2 (HCSB)
I love the challenge of this Scripture. It reminds me to keep the main thing, the main thing. To check my motives. To handle the Truth with care and compassion--and great patience. It reminds me that my calling as one who shares the Word of Life with readers and listeners is an intense task--one God considers important.
I especially love the way the HCSB renders the verse. Where other translations command, "Preach the Word," HCSB chooses "Proclaim the message." Preaching may be the province of a small number among us. But each of us can handle the call to "Proclaim." Tell it around. Broadcast it, even. Be strong and energized and intentional.
And, if nothing else, Paul is so very practical. He knows the opportunities to be intentional witnesses for Christ in this mixed-up and battle-filled world aren't always delivered to our doorsteps on gilded invitations when we're most prepared to receive them. So he reminds us to be ready at any moment. KJV translates it as "in season and out of season." Kinda like an Olympic athlete staying in peak form in non-Olympic years. It's hard for a caregiver to be ready like that. But not impossible.
Here again the HCSB translaters give us another wrinkle: "Persist in it whether convenient or not." Okay. That's a great one for us as caregivers. We know a bit about persisting--and a lot about the "not" side of convenient. But I resonate with the word picture. To me, it's a tremendous reminder that doing the right thing, with great patience and encouragement, is key -- whether in preaching, in proclaiming, or in our caregiving tasks. It's a bigger reminder that my conveniences -- and yours -- aren't all there is in this life. Someone greater than we are sends us. And as His reps entrusted with His message for the world He created, it's clear that He (not we) is at the center of it all. That's why proclaiming may be a challenge -- but it'll always be worthwhile.
And, speaking of proclaiming ...
It's a bit of a distance off, but I've been invited to appear on Alberta, Canada's Miracle Channel -- The Insight program -- to talk about caring for the aging. It's a live call-in show. And the date is planned for September 12; 11 a.m. Mountain Time.
Here are the particulars:
I'll be linking in live via Skype. This will be my second appearance on the broadcast -- and I'm delighted to be invited back. Please tune in if you're in Canada. If not, check out the live feed: http://www.miraclechannel.ca/live.php
So, mark your calendar -- and please pray with us that the broadcast will be a blessing -- and that the interviewer and I will have every resource we need from Our Father to proclaim the message with patience and encourage the hurting. It's a special privilege to take caller questions -- and an opportunity to tap into the Lord's wisdom for people in complex and challenging caregiving roles.
Thanks for your prayers!
Blessings and prayers for you tonight,
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