Birthday Blessings, Momma!
Henry Ward Beecher said, “The mother’s heart is the child’s schoolroom.” What true words! As I celebrate my mother's birthday today I think about what all she taught me and what I am most thankful for!
I thank God that my parents were hand-picked by God to be the vessels that would raise me to be a Christian. Mom had to carry me nine months in her petite body. Then she had to labor to bring me to earth. After all of that she still thought of me as one of God's greatest gifts!
Psalm 145: 4, "One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts." The Gospel gets passed on by declaring, meditating, speaking, singing, etc. Being raised in a community of faith such as church is important but not enough. One hour a week in Sunday School will not do it. In Deuteronomy 6: 7-9, Moses said, "Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."
These things were done in our house and were taught by my parents. God's word was related to activities in our lives. They reinforced those lessons again and again. The story of God, God's Word and faith in God gets passed to the next generation through praise and worship. Children need to see their parents and grandparents truly worshiping in genuine thanksgiving and praise.
With each generation we must refresh who God is and what He has done for us! I never remember a time I did not attend church. My parents were always active at church. We had morning family devotionals before school. As I got older I witnessed my parents start every morning with devotional and prayer. My mother and a dear friend of hers started a weekly prayer group at church that she still attends each week ......that was about 33 years ago! I always knew my parents prayed blessings and protection on my brothers and I. They prayed for our future spouses and future grandchildren. It was their example and influence that shaped my life.
Children don't just "catch" salvation. Accepting Jesus Christ as our personal Savior is an individual decision. They cannot ride their parents coattails. The Bible says it is our duty to see to it that the next generation hears the Gospel. God intends for the older generation to teach the newer generation to read, think, trust, obey and rejoice. Psalm 78: 6, "...so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children." Psalm 78: 4, "We will not hide [them] from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done."
I was given a very meaningful gift from my parents. They passed the baton of God's truth to my generation. Now I have a sacred duty to pass that faith down to my children and my grandchildren and great-grandchildren. I am not accountable for what people do with the Truth that I share with them. But I do believe God will hold me accountable for passing the Gospel on the the next generation. This applies to all of us. Like my mom, our mission is to pass the baton of faith to the generations to come!
There is a song called, "Call Her Blessed" by Stacey Noll that has some special words that make me think of my mom:
"As I grew she taught me to follow. Every time I fell, she was there to pick me up She held me close and then she let me go. Bless the one who gave me life. Bless the one who held me in her arms. Bless the one who told me that Jesus loves me so. You have heard her prayers, You have seen her tears. We rise and call her blessed. A mother's love is precious, so faithful and pure. With tenderness she blesses much more than we deserve. When I look into her eyes I begin to realize what a wonder her love has been to me. Her faith lives on in us. We are walking miracles because she followed You. Bless the one who gave me life!"
Mom, Sylvia, Honey,
As you wake up to see this day that the Lord has made, I pray you have a graceful birthday filled with family and friends! You are the sweetest mother on earth. I pray you enjoy the goodness of the Lord on this special day and on all the days of your beautiful life! I love you and I thank you. And I thank you, God, for this godly woman whose quiet influence powerfully touched me. Thank you for letting me see Christ in her!
If you want to leave a legacy then pass the promise.