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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Heritage of Our Faith

This week we officially begin the Ministry of Motherhood Book Club! There has been a lot of meaty stuff to dig into in the bible and this week we started reading the Introduction to Sally Clarkson's wonderful book.

One of the things that has leaped out at me while doing the different bible readings is found in these passages:
2 Timothy 1:5, Proverbs 6:20-22, Psalm 127:3.

These passages all  have one thing in common.. they speak of heritage. How we are connected to our ancestors and their faith and how we are to hold that faith and pass it on to our children.

In Psalm 127:3, we are told that children are a gift from God, the word used in the New Jerusalem bible is "birthright", in others "heritage". Sometimes the world views children as burdens. They scoff at Christians who follow biblical precepts and have more than the average 1.5 children they SAY we should have.

 The bible is very clear here that children are meant to be treasured, cherished, nurtured and taught. Through them our bloodlines and, more importantly, our faith is passed on to the future generations of the world.

In Matt 28:19-20, we are charged to pass on that faith "Go therefore, make disciples of all nations, baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you.."

How do we pass on the faith to our children? I'd like to believe it is in the way that I live. "Do as I say and not as I do" is not a policy that works very well! I know! I lived in a home where my father would correct and instruct us but would do otherwise. It creates confusion, resentment, loss of faith and respect.

We MUST live our faith and let our children SEE it alive and well.. in how we make decisions, how we deal with trials, how we react to others and negative situations. A tough call but not an impossible one! 

What heritage of faith am I passing on to my children? How often have I messed up as a mom or even as a person? How many times have I done something that is NOT a reflection of my faith? How many opportunities have I missed to teach them about my faith? We often make excuses for ourselves and say "I'm only human"... (in the words of my teenaged drama queens..)  NOT!!  We may be born with original sin, but the moment Christ died on that Cross His Blood went between our sins and God's justice.

We learned last week that  He tells us that if we abide in Him, we shall bear fruit. Fruit that will be manifested in our faith and fruit that will be passed on to our children. Of great significance though, is that abiding in God, means God is IN US!

With God in us, we have our strength, our sustenance. Not only is He in us and with us but in the latter part of  Matt 28:20 He says "..I am with you always; yes to the end of time"

That means eternity! He is with us for all eternity!

 WE HAVE NO EXCUSES! No excuses for slipping up, for sinning, for making wrong choices. HE IS WITH US.. EMMANUEL! If He is with us and we are in Him, we CAN rise above the shackles of our humanity, our sinfulness, our faults and flaws. He is the Good Shepherd guarding us and He is also our teacher.. daily He draws us to perfection and we CAN soar and fly on eagles' wings... because He LIVES IN US!  Luke 6:40 says "The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher" We CAN be like our teacher, Jesus, and our children CAN be like us, their teachers.

We CAN teach our children by example. We CAN find courage to go out and evangelize. We WILL have wisdom and knowledge to pass on. Isn't that an awesome thing to know? Even better, when I fall, I CAN get up through the strength He provides and the mercy of His forgivness!  AWESOME!!

 I have been charged with the mighty task of raising souls for the Lord. Each seed that I plant must be watered with my prayers and with my life's work of living the gospel daily, setting a good example for my children to follow.

Part of parenting is recognising that these souls are not ours.. they belong to Him. Right now, I am almost done with the weeding and fertilizing of  the souls of my older children. It is harvest time, time for the Lord to do His part and for me to stand aside and watch them blossom under His care. I will, of course continue to pray for them and set a good example for them, guide them when necessary, but ultimately those seeds I planted long ago are just about ready to blossom. What wonderful fruit will they bear? How will God view my work as a gardener in the field of life? When I stand before Our Creator, I hope to hear him say "Well done good and faithful servant!"

So, as I continue to delve into both His Word and the talented writings of an experienced mother, I am thrilled to be on this journey of learning and growing. I feel blessed to be a part of this wonderful book club. Why don't you take a peek at what's happening over at the GMG. I promise you'll be blessed and inspired!


Jessica Heights said...

I can't wait to check this book out...I'm still finishing Mission Of Motherhood though!

Tami said...

Amen Lisa Maria! I love thinking about the concept of heritage and what I will leave my children. I have always love the passage in Deuteronomy 6 that talks about teaching your children about God's Law and passing your faith to the generations to come.

Heart Song said...

The 'ministry of motherhood'...it IS a ministry and a privilige.

Excellent post, Lisa Maria!

Lisa Maria said...

Thank you Marsha, Ima and Jessica. So glad you stopped by. I'm learning so much doing this study.. isn't it amazing how you learn something new each day? Guess we never really leave the classroom ;-)