From an old English parsonage, Down by the sea, There came in the twilight, A message to me; Its quaint Saxon legend, Deeply engraven, Hath, as it seems to me, Teaching from Heaven. And on through the hours The quiet words ring Like a low inspiration- DO THE NEXT THING Many a questioning, many a fear, Many a doubt, hath its quieting here. Moment by moment, Let down from Heaven, Time, opportunity, Guidance, are given. Fear not tomorrows, Child of the King, Trust them with Jesus, DO THE NEXT THING Do it immediately; Do it with prayer; Do it reliantly, casting all care; Do it with reverence, Tracing His Hand, Who placed it before thee with Earnest command. Stayed on Omnipotence, Safe 'neath His wing, Leave all resultings, DO THE NEXT THING Looking to Jesus, ever serener, (Working or suffering) Be thy demeanor, In His dear presence, The rest of His calm, The light of His countenance Be thy psalm, Strong in His faithfulness, Praise and sing, Then, as He beckons thee, DO THE NEXT THING -author unknown
Heritage — it’s a rich, sad word.
This word reminds me that people live and die. They pass on good and bad to their children.
Some of my favorite thoughts about heritage come from the Bible. It’s a book about heritage. It’s a book that contains historical facts and verifiable prophecies fulfilled.
It’s a book of underdogs, surprises, and irony.
Rahab was a prostitute. Her heritage was headed in one direction, until God interrupted her path and placed her in the prestigious line of Jesus’ birth.
There are many true accounts like this in the pages of scripture.
But– I confess– the one I think most about is me and my heritage.
I was headed in one direction, and one day, God interrupted that path. He changed me. He didn’t just tweak my life, or urge me to complete a self-help course. He raised me from my spirit-deadness and changed me like the caterpillar turns into a butterfly. In the cocoon, the caterpillar completely liquifies. It doesn’t emerge merely dressed up like a fancy version of the old creature.
It’s a totally new creation.
This is the heritage I want to pass on to my children:
It is the living who give thanks to You, as I do today. A mother tells her sons and daughters about God’s faithfulness. –taken from Isaiah 38:19
The words that God commands me today shall be on my heart. I will teach them diligently to my sons and daughters. I will talk of them when I sit in my house, and when I walk, before I sleep and when I wake up. — taken from Deuteronomy 6:5-7
The heritage of ME will be imperfect. But by God’s grace, I will also pass on the heritage of faith. Each child will have the opportunity to grab hold of this inheritance.
It’s a legacy of faith in an eternal, loving God.
It’s an inheritance that will never fade away– even after I am gone.
“Is there any God like you? You forgive my sins. You pass over transgressions by the survivors who are your heritage. You are not angry forever, because You delight in gracious love.”
– taken from Micah 7:18
Photo: Mother’s Day 2017