It seems inevitable to see one’s memory deteriorating as one ages. Sometimes the full picture remains with details missing. We might also have come across a book that we read before but appears as a new book now. Yet the memory of some people and issues would stay forever as long as one does not suffer from dementia. Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, saying: “I am reminded of your sincere faith”. How would Paul remember such abstract idea as “faith”? According to the interpretation of Rev. Timothy Poon, it is due to the shared experience of Paul and Timothy. What stays in Paul’s heart and mind must be Christian faith, which was held firmly by both as they spread God’s word throughout a wide range of area. Their accomplishments in the past laid a strong foundation for Timothy to inherit Paul’s vision and kept offering strength to Timothy when he encountered tough times.
Apostle Paul pointed out clearly that the faith of Timothy was inherited from his mother and grandmother. Incidentally, Rev. Joanne Wong also mentioned the importance of the inheritance of faith when she talked about memory. She highlighted that the Jews used to teach their children to recite Bible verses when the kids just started to talk. The purpose is to keep God’s words in the heart and mind of their children, consequently forming a collective memory for the people of God.
Brothers and sisters, how do your past experience push you forward onto the path of faith? During your faith-seeking journey, who is your Paul, the mentor in your life? Who is your Timothy, to whom you can pass on the faith tradition?
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