“And the LORD appeared unto him, and said, Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of: Sojourn (Stay) in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed (descendants), I will give all these countries, and I will perform the oath which I sware unto Abraham thy father; And I will make thy seed (descendants) to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed (descendants) all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.”Genesis 26:2-5
I had the great privilege to grow up in a Christian home. I did not always appreciate that, but as I got older, I learned to be thankful for the home God placed me in. God makes no mistakes in where He places us, even when we don’t understand or it is not a good situation. I have heard many stories of people being raised in an ungodly environment or in an abusive home. I am ashamed for being ungrateful for my home, as many have endured things that I never saw or had to endure. I was encouraged to do what was right and even demanded to do so. The spanking stick set me in order when I got out of line, and my parents loved me too much to see me go too far.
I didn’t have to look far to find examples of homes that were not godly. My parents did not have the privilege I did, and the homes they were raised in did not promote godliness. God did not have first place in the home, and my parents endured things that caused much pain. I foolishly thought I would like this type of home, but God graciously did not allow my wish to come true.
My home was not perfect, but I saw firsthand how my parents desired to serve God. When I was growing up, much of our time as a family was spent at church and doing activities that were associated with church. My mom and dad were involved in Awanas, the bus ministry, Sunday school, Christian school and even played in the church softball league. I saw them lead from the front and I still witness that to this day. My sister and I learned a lot from their example, even though we groaned at times because we had to be at church early on Saturdays to serve breakfast. I did not realize the impact this had on my own life until I grew older and it became my turn to serve and raise my own kids. I praise God for the legacy He has provided me, and I think of the countless blessings I have received because of my parents. Deuteronomy 6:6-7 “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.”
I think of Isaac here in this passage and how God’s promise to his father, Abraham, was fulfilled through him. Abraham was a man of great faith and Isaac received the blessings promised to his father because Abraham chose to obey the voice and commandments of God. God performed His oath to Abraham through Isaac, and Isaac’s descendants would be as innumerable as the stars. In 2020, we can still see the offspring of Abraham because of the obedience of God’s servant so long ago. Isaac was a beneficiary of a godly heritage just as I have been. I would not change anything of how I grew up, and I am grateful to God for what He has established in my life. A godly heritage cannot be underestimated and all praise and glory must be given to God.
What is your legacy? Maybe you did not have the benefit of growing up in a Christian home, but what are you doing now with your own family? Maybe you don’t have a family to lead, but you do have an influence on the people whom God has placed in your life. What will you do with the knowledge of the faith God has given you? Luke 12:48b states, “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.” What legacy will you leave when God calls you home? Will you be known for eternal, godly things or will you be known for temporary successes that die with you? May we live a life that is pleasing to God, may others be blessed by the life we live, and may God get all the glory. We can leave a spiritual inheritance behind. As Dr. Bob Jones. Sr, said, “Do right – till the stars fall from the sky – do right.”