To Titus, a true son in our common faith:I love the little thing Paul does here.
Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior.
For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you–
In a letter, the first thing is a section containing the senders information. ("[From] Paul, a bondservant of God. . .")
Next, an addressment: "Titus," "Dear Titus," "My beloved Titus," ("To Titus, a true son. . .")
Finally you reach the letter itself, and all the information the sender attempts to convey. ("For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should. . ." Wait, where's that other bit?)
In this letter Paul, at least as it is portrayed in the English translation, gives a little play on words. After saying, "To Titus," Paul goes on to, instead of the meat of his letter, list the things that are very literally for Titus to receive (Grace, mercy, and peace), and very specifically who they are from (God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior of course).
I haven't been addressing many letters lately; in fact, I haven't been addressing any at all (both literally and figuratively).
No newsletters, little to no facebook (meaning I'm not getting back to the people I am trying to witness to 'en ingles' [in English]), not as many e-mails to my family as anyone would like and I'm not even sure how to contact what supporters I have let alone, because of the way my finances are being handled, who many of them are (if you have supported me in anyway, contextually this would technically refer to finances but also so very true of prayer, I cannot express how thankful I am for allowing God to use you in lifting up myself and this ministry so I could be used like never before).
I had a few other ideas floating around for what my application might wind-up being when I was writing the beginning of this study, but after reading the verse and beginning to write I really didn't have a clue.
Well Paul, the big man, the shining example, that one super-duper willing-to-suffer-anything apostle guy who was totally on fire for Jesus and went through some crazy stuff and wrote a pretty good chunk of the New Testament (You know who I'm talking about?) also wrote quite a few letters.
He kept the news flowing.
Through the empowering of the Holy Spirit he kept the churches and individuals of The church [Ephesians 5:25-32; Colossians 1:17-20] connected, focused on God, and inspired.
I want to be used like that. (And to be totally honest I also don't want to return to the States in debt because I didn't tell people who would have been willing at the time to help that the mission trip I was on had many costs aside from time and effort; but still, I really do want to be used like that. Owing money would be annoying but it's not like I couldn't pay it off.)
The problem is I think Paul wrote many of His epistles while under house arrest, not while having nearly every second of his day filled. The problem with my excuse is I think he wrote many letters while on the road and busy with stuff too, and Paul really wasn't the type to waste a second when it could be used for God, spare time available or no.
So, I guess if I can't find any spare time I'll just need to take some to spread the good news.
Who wants to take a guess what my next free day will be devoted to?
Here's a link to Josh's blog. :)
Written January 31, 2012
So I think I have done an OK job at least of following through with this application, though there is always room for improvement, but I'm glad to pull it up again now at the beginning of our time back at the ranch.
I will be continuing to upload blogs, (there was a bit of another 'fall away' for the past week as we made ready to leave El Salvador) and starting tomorrow I will begin simultaneously uploading an IBS from our time going through The Beatitudes and an IBS written since returning to the ranch.
So then! Tomorrow I will be uploading a study of Matthew 5:3 and a study of John 13:3
If you feel led to give even just a small amount to God's work through this ministry by helping to pay off the rest of what is owed for my mission trip please contact my dad or myself, or ask at Crossroads Community Church for information on how to provide a donation for the program.