Several years ago, I bid farewell to a former associate who was leaving and returning to Japan. He worked closely with several of us and we greatly respected and valued his contributions. On the eve of his departure, our group had a dinner to wish him well. One of my partners delivered a tribute to him, “I am very thankful for Dr. Smith’s service to our group and the community. I know that many people would not be alive today had it not been for Dr. Smith. We all owe him a great debt of gratitude!”
It was true. Many people owed their lives to Dr. Smith and his compassion and expertise. It was a touching and endearing tribute to this man. As I reflected upon this speech, I recalled people to whom I owe my spiritual life. What is my spiritual heritage? I remember the man whom God used to lead me to Him in college. I remember the great missionary orthopedic surgeon, Dr. John Dreisbach, who influenced me when I was a medical student. I remember my Christian brother who supported and loved me when all others turned their back on me. If it had not been for these men that God used in my life, I would be spiritually dead.
I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well.
2 Timothy 1:5 (ESV)
The Apostle Paul reminds of the spiritual heritage that raised his protege in the Lord, Timothy. Both his mother and grandmother were godly influences and surrounded the young man with a great spiritual legacy. Timothy was the pastor of the church at Ephesus. For the believers who benefitted from his preaching and fellowship, these same people owed a spiritual debt to Timothy’s mother and grandmother.
Many people would not be alive today had it not been for the godly men and women that God uses to bring all of us into a closer relationship with Him. Thank God for His grace and mercy for allowing you to meet these fellow saints of God.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.