Something that I regularly pray about is how my husband and I parent our children. I am often praying that God give us wisdom so we can instill the importance of living a life for God in their hearts. We want our children's hearts to be focused on God and the good things He does and we want them to have hearts that seek to please Him. Part of that wisdom we seek is finding a way to communicate this to our children in a way that they can relate to. The world they are growing up in is so different from the world my husband and I grew up in. For example there hasn't been a time since my daughter was born that our country wasn't in a military conflict with someone else. Another big difference is the use of media - all of my children have only known a world with email, internet and cell phones. This completely changes how we communicate to our kids and we pray for wisdom on how to communicate God effectively to them. This doesn't mean the truths in the Bible change one bit; but the method on how we hand it down to the next generation has to change or they will not listen. As I continue on in my study on the book of Psalms, I want to focus this week on psalms that express the importance of passing our faith on to the next generation. Please use the link and read Psalm 71.
The author of this psalm expresses the fact that his life hasn't been easy, yet we also see that God has always been his refuge. He expresses the desire to sing God's praises no matter how old or what is happening in his life. That attitude of praise is something that could easily be another focus of study; however, I actually want to focus on the overall message of this psalm and one verse in particular. The author of this psalm expresses his faith in God by using phrases such as God has been, "my confidence since my youth." What a beautiful statement! So, we know that the author of this psalm has lived a life of faith in God. There are other phrases he uses such as, "As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more." Even after living a life that hasn't been easy, the author shows us that he will always place his hope in our Creator.
But the one sentence that stuck out at me the most in this psalm is found in verse 18, "Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, my God, till I declare Your power to the next generation, Your mighty acts to all who are to come." What an amazing statement! Do you consider that an important priority in your mission? Do you consider the importance of declaring God's faithfulness and the hope He has given us through Jesus to the next generation? The author of this psalm shows us the attitude of someone who has follwed God all his life and even when things were difficult, he still sang praises about the greatness of God. And one of the reasons to be so vocal about singing praises of God's faithfulness was to pass it on to the next generation.
How important is that to you? Is it important enough to set aside what your preferences are in order to effectively communicate to the younger generations? Someone set aside their preferences in order for you to understand how important it is to follow Jesus, can you do the same so we do not lose the next generation? The author reminds us that praising God isn't about how comfortable we are, it is all about Him and passing it on. How can you be willing to be a little uncomfortable in order for the next generation to learn of His love and faithfulness?
This post is linked with Inspire Me Monday and Sharing His Beauty.