Faith for Generations
1 Timothy 1:3-7
3 I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, 4 greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy,
5 when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. 6 Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
The decisions we make are larger than us. Often times we believe our decisions are just about us. They do not impact anyone else. Our decisions fill up our lives. Said another way our lives are shaped by the decisions we make. Our lives have an influence on others. Our lives have been shaped for better or worse by the decision of those before us. As a father, I strive to make decisions that will impact my children, my unborn grandchildren and on down the line. If I can impart a living faith found in Jesus Christ to the next generation it will influence others for generations to come. Note in the verse above, that Paul references the genuine faith of Timothy’s grandmother and mother. Their faith influenced Timothy.
Let’s broaden out this idea. In 1837 a group of people gathered with a desire to start a church for their community. One hundred and eighty-five years later their decisions are still having an impact today. How we live our lives individual and collectively as the church impacts other generations. We live in a time of staunch individualism, that carries the idea that my decisions do not impact others, it is all about me. This could not be further from the truth. If you choose to follow God closely your children are more likely to see this living faith as needful in their own lives. If you choose to serve your community and your church, more than likely your children will see that need as well.
To the Senior generation you are making decisions, giving money and prayers to people and building programs that you will never see. You do so to bless and impact another generation. I am thankful to prior generations that faithfully followed God that has provided the wonderful facilities we have now. They set in place a mind set and a heart for missions and giving that continues to impact generation after generation.
So, what does this have to do with me and you. I am calling all of us to live up to the standards that have been set by prior generations. Standards of loving God that is demonstrated in every area of life. Giving of time, talents, and money. A heart for lost community. A heart for their church family. A heart to faithfully follow God.