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Listen while you read: "Pass Me Not O Gentle Saviour"1 (Lyrics)

1 Timothy 4:7b-8 – Train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. (NIV)

Listening to recent discussions about an acceptable minimum wage, I remembered how fortunate that I was to have received good training from godly parents using principles based on the Bible.

I was born during the Great Depression before the Second World War, and now I am living in the worldwide coronavirus pandemic. Good training is as important now as ever.

My first part-time job was taking in the empty garbage bins for a neighbour. When the assignment was completed, I was rewarded with a payment of fifty cents.

Excitedly, I rushed home to show my parents. The first thing that I was expected to do was to put five cents into the tithe purse. I was then allowed to take the remaining forty-five cents and spend it as I wished.

My first full-time job was pulling weeds from Monday to Saturday (sometimes on hot days) in a large commercial garden. My compensation for each week's work was $15!

This caused a problem for my parents. My older siblings were required to pay weekly room and board based on their rate of pay, but always at least $15! My father was an executive with the largest employer in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada, so my mother didn't need money from their children, but it was part of their disciplined training.

In my case, I first had to put $1.50 into the tithe purse, but that left only $13.50.

They decided on an exception, allowing my room and board to be reduced to $8.50 per week, leaving me with a balance of $5.00 for six days of hard work.

That seemed very fair to me. My parents worked hard providing for all our needs, and they successfully trained us to follow in their example.

As life developed, I realized that successful organizations placed high value on training. Even later in life, I am fortunate to live in a facility with outstanding staff. Recently, I have noticed occasions when a staff member is doing a different task. Inevitably, there is someone with that person doing training.

Finally, another aspect of training is the discipline that is required. The trainee has to accept what is being taught. In this time of students learning from home, we hear of examples of parents and students maintaining schedules to enable successful learning. Here again, the Bible has much to say. Here are two references that I have found helpful:

Ephesians 6:4 – Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord. (NLT)

Hebrews 12:11 – For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. (ESV)

Prayer: Father, help us to be willing to learn and be trained in following Your way. As we grow, may we share Your love with others. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Vincent Walter <vwalter@bell.net>
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks Vince.


    Wise words, Vince.


    Great post, Vincent! Training is so important. God bless!


    Hello
    Thank you for this. I enjoy learning a little bit more about you with each one and, of course, good scriptures also.
    God bless.


    Good morning Vincent Walter,
    Thank you for today’s devotional. Discipline in our early days can be very good training for our future days and how we handle life situations. Learning about tithing definitely teaches us a way to serve and contribute to the Lord’s work. Blessings.


    Vincent,
    What a solid upbringing you had, and how fortunate you are. Discipline is a blessed art. Through the years my husband and I have paid the grandchildren to do yard work. When about 15 years of age, we heard one of the boys say to the other, “I will not work for Poppy anymore. He doesn’t pay over $7.00 an hour.” Thanks for sharing.


    I, too, was born during the depression. Money was scare. 10 cents was a treat. It bought Smith Brothers Cough Drops which I loved.
    The good thing is that we were grateful and learned the value of things. I don’t remember entitlement.
    Looking back, I am especially thankful for godly parents. For example, my mom never started a project without asking God’s blessing. Worship and work must be one.
    Shalom.


    It looks like we both grew up under similar conditions. My dad went into the army in 1939. I grew up doing lots of chores. Garden work, cleaning chimney of the wood stove in kitchen, hauling coal from the backyard to an opening at side of house that coal slid down under house to the furnace. The food coupons. and then I had enough energy to help my neighbours with their chicken coop and neighbour at back with his greenhouse,
    When I finished high school, I was told no further education and I had to go out to work and pay rent.


    Dear Vincent,
    Very interesting it is to hear your experience growing up in your family. It is amazing that you accepted your parents’ rules and agreed with them. I know that times were different than as my parents explained and those lessons stayed with them all their lives. I do think that as parents we do not do as much training and discipline as God would like us to do. With two people in the family working outside the home, we sometimes are too tired to follow through. Thank you for sharing and helping us to remember what is important to our Lord. May you enjoy this day that God has given us.


    HI Vincent,
    A year ago, at Thanksgiving all our family were here. As we sat around the table, our son said, “My generation and especially our children’s generation have never had any trauma in their lives like the Depression and WW II. If they had, I think there would not be so much taken for granted and so many requests for what they think they deserve.” Someone mentioned 9/11 and he said, of course, that was horrible, but it didn’t impact lives like the Depression and the war. I would have to agree with him. I was born in 1937 as the country was coming out of the Depression but it was very much a part of my life because of the experience of my parents. My Dad graduated from college in 1929 and somehow managed always to have a job. My mother sold Encyclopedias door to door. I cannot imagine how that went.
    As always thank you for your thoughtful devotional.
    (Tx)


    Now you’re sharing Gods Word and your hard-earned wisdom as you learned to share your hard-earned money, through loving discipline, and training and a right attitude – and we are the ones who are blessed by your training. How amazing! We who read your reflections must give great thanks to God for all that we gain from your background training. We can also apply what you tell us, to our own children and grandchildren. God has assured me all along that He would provide blessings along the way, I just never thought about all the ways He would come up with new blessings.
    Hearing your ‘voice’ always seems to have a good influence on me. My anxiety level seems unusually high these days – no doubt a result of the constant flow of news that is so unsettling. So thank you for your whole attitude, Vincent. If it touches ME this way, it likely touches many others as well – your quiet, unassuming voice of righteous reason. Thank you for your faithfulness.


    What a blessing to have had parents like yours who cared enough to help you develop a disciplined life. That word also encompasses the word disciple.


    Dear Vincent,
    I always enjoy and find a challenge in your devotionals, and this one was no exception. The discipline of training is truly of great value, and it does have a bearing on our Christian life as well.
    Blessings to you.


    Dear Vincent,
    You are our favourite writer. Always a good solid truth in your messages.
    God bless.


    Really benefitted from this one, especially, Vincent. I always derive something special from your clear, intelligent, inspired writing. Thanks for your faithful commitment.


    Thank you, Vincent, for sharing this devotional reminder of early working days. As a teenager, I thought $3.25/hr an acceptable wage for a part-time job. As a young woman and primary grade teacher, $400/month was considered okay for me, but my dear husband received $425/month for teaching upper grades just because he was a man and considered the designated bread winner. Back in the 1950s women accepted what was offered being grateful to be hired at all! The movie “Nine to Five” put a humorous spin on that practice. Thanks again for writing. Blessings.

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