Titus 2: 7
A few days after I started first grade, my teacher sent me to the principal's office. I was terrified; I had no idea what I had done wrong.
Instead of punishing me, the principal began handing me books to read. A third grade book. A fourth grade book. Finally a sixth grade book, the highest grade they had in my rural elementary school. I read and comprehended them all.
Reflecting on this episode recently, I realized my early reading prowess came from my father's willingness to read to my sister and me at bedtime. We had a cherished book of 365 bedtime stories, one for each day of the year. My dad would lie down between us, hold the book up where we could see it, and read. I learned to read by trying to follow along, asking my father now and then where he was in the text.
My dad modeled good reading behavior, and I picked up on it. Simple as that.
When my kids were growing up, I raised them with the idea that someone is always watching you. Not necessarily in a creepy way, but watching you to see if you will do the right thing. I told them that often people want to do the right thing, but they're waiting for someone else to do it first.
The Apostle Paul emphasizes the same theme in Titus 2: 7.
In everything set them an example by doing what is good.
Set them an example because people are watching. Often they will follow if they see the right behavior modeled.
As followers of Christ, let us first follow the behavior that Christ modeled, and then model it for others. By setting them an example of what is good, we can bring more goodness to the world and make disciples of those who watch and want to follow and emulate our behavior.
My November podcast is dropping today! The topic is the #5 theme of the Top 11 Themes of Jesus, which is Repentance and Forgiveness. Guest David Inman will walk us through the biblical basis for what he calls the Forgiveness Imperative. Search for Cecil Taylor Monthly Podcasts on Apple, Spotify and Podbean, or head to my launch page, CecilTaylorMinistries.com/free-content .