We will not conceal them from their children, but tell to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, and His strength and His wondrous works that He has done. For He established a testimony in Jacob and appointed a law in Israel, which He commanded our fathers that they should teach them to their children, that the generation to come might know, even the children yet to be born, that they may arise and tell them to their children, that they should put their confidence in God and not forget the works of God, but keep His commandments. Psalm 78:4-7
The Child continued to grow and become strong, increasing in wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him …. And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men. Luke 2:40, 52
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
There is always a next step in what God is doing. While sometimes it will be something brand new, most often it is a continuation and expansion of what God has been doing. It was just a few short years ago that Cape Cod Church was changing locations. The move was certainly a next step, but while our church campus was brand new, our mission was a continuation and expansion of the ongoing story of Cape Cod Church. A driving force in the story of Cape Cod Church has been the next generation. So much of our relocation was about our hopes, dreams, and plans for the next generation and how each of us could be a part of blessing them in a mighty way. And now here we are with several years under our belt of addressing and meeting the needs of our young people in the fulfillment of being a blessing to the next generation in a significant way.
Several summers ago my family had a gathering and party to celebrate my parents 65th Wedding anniversary. In preparation for it each of us wrote about one special memory and one special thing learned from them. I wrote about a repeated memory I have of my Mom and Dad standing face to face in our living room after my Dad’s arrival home from work. There they would give each other their total attention for a moment or so as they looked into each other’s eyes and then shared a tender and loving kiss. I also wrote that I learned from my Mom and Dad that the relationship we have with our children is best served by making our relationship as husband and wife the centerpiece of the home. When a mom and dad’s love and commitment for each other is primary and not secondary to that of their children, their children will have a quality of love, a level of stability, and a preparation for life that is greater than it could ever be otherwise. I share this with you in order to illustrate the impact of one generation on the next and how it works best.
If the older generation in the Psalm above told the younger generation to put their confidence in God, remember the works of God, and keep His commandments but did not clearly show the younger generation that they were putting their confidence in God, remembering the works of God, and keeping His commandments, there would be a serious breakdown in the life of faith of God’s people being passed onto to succeeding generations. As the young people of our church experience a climate of faith that comes to them from the older generation they will best be able to embrace a life of faith. Faith is all about genuinely experiencing a love relationship with God, with each other, and with the world. Our young people will see the reality of our faith, when we actually seek the Lord consistently, connect with Him intimately, experience an outflow of life that comes from our love relationship with Him, and then share it with each other and the world.
Yes, both in the home and in the church, we must talk to and teach our children about the life of faith God’s people should have. Of course, here at Cape Cod Church, we call this life of faith, “living fully for God.” However, if our children don’t see our love relationship with God lived out before them clearly and consistently, they are not likely to want the God we profess to know and love. “Our praises of the Lord, and His strength and His wondrous works that He has done” will not be concealed from our children if we live out before them a life of faith that genuinely contains these things. This week’s Devotionals focus on how we can go forward with blessing succeeding generations and how we can do it in the best possible way as a “next step” response to God.
Today's prayer response from today's:
Lord, I want to be a part of a fellowship of believers that fully live out their faith and not just talk about it. Help me to genuinely experience a love relationship with you that can be seen clearly and consistently. May your love overflow from my life to others. May my part in all this help succeeding generations want you, Lord, the one I profess to know and love. Amen!
Posted on Mon, June 19, 2017
by Ken Hart