Posted by: Rex Boyles | March 9, 2008

“The Coming of Titus”

On March 9, 2000, Titus Owen Smith was born to Larry and Cheri Smith. (I was there, because I am his Papa.)

He bears the name “Smith”, because that is his father’s family name … an honorable name with a repuation of hard work, family loyalty, and devotion to the Lord’s Church. (I am proud of the man he will become as he lives up to his family name.)

He bears the name “Owen”, because my daughter loves her daddy. (It’s my middle name.) She wanted her son to be called by one of my names. I will make no claims as to what that may mean to him in years to come; but I hope that it foreshadows a love that he will have for his mother and father. (I tease my daughter that the only time the poor boy hears my part of his name is when he is in trouble – getting called by his whole name.)

He is the first boy I have ever known named “Titus” – aside from the young man Paul mentored. (I have known boys named Timothy, Paul, James, Peter, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and even Jude – but never a Titus.) I do not know all the reasons that Larry and Cheri chose the name, “Titus”, but there are several reasons I appreciate their wisdom:

“But God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us by the coming of Titus …”              (2 Corinthians 7:6, NIV).
Titus was born during the worst year in my life. During my darkest days, I found such comfort – when his mother would bring him to my office or when I would drive 8 hours round-trip to spend a couple of hours with him on his birthday. He was then and even now is a source of great comfort and joy. I see in him a zest for life that inspires me. 

“I thank God, who put into the heart of Titus the same concern I have for you …” (2 Corinthians 8:16, NIV). 
Time will tell what God will do with Titus’ heart, but I believe that I already seen in him a heart of genuine love for people. May God take his interest in people – in their joy – and use him to bring love, joy, and comfort to others – just like his parents do … just like his Smith grandparents do … just like his Boyles great-grandparents do … just like Paul did … just like Jesus did.

“As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker among you …” (2 Corinthians 8:23, NIV).
Titus is 8 years old today, so our partnership – our work together – will have to wait awhile, but I look forward to the day, when I can teach with him – serve with him – worship with him. I pray God allows me to live long enough to hear him preach, teach, lead singing, become a missionary, etc.

Titus, I love you – boy. Happy Birthday … may God give you a “long and useful life” in His Kingdom.  Papa Rex

 p.s. When I called Titus to sing “Happy Birthday” to him, I asked him, “Now that you are 8 years old, are you driving yet?” He answered me in such a mature and wise way – “No, Papa … I will need another few weeks for that!” Of course, I laughed … but thought, it will seem just like a few weeks before he is driving – maybe even driving to see his Papa.


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