“And Moses did as the Lord commanded him: and he took Joshua, and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation: And he laid his hands upon him, and gave him a charge (inauguration), as the Lord commanded by the hand of Moses.”Numbers 27:22-23
As long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to have a wife and family. I wanted kids to call my own, and I wanted to teach them cool things and pass along knowledge I’ve learned along the way. In a way, this is why I write these devotionals to share my life stories and how God has worked in my life through various situations and trials. I am not sure when my day will come, but this is a way to record those things I choose to pass along. My day will come when God will take me home, and I would like to see my children take up the torch God has given me. Success is not equated in how much money they will make but it will be summed up in how they obeyed and served the Lord.
One of my uncles always seemed to have too much to drink on Christmas Eve and other family get-togethers, and he always gave the same speech to my cousin and me. He waxed long about how he was proud of us, and how he wanted us to be better than him. He talked about how he had done better than his dad, and he wanted us to do the same. He mostly spoke of how he was more successful monetarily and how he had more than his dad did. He was proud of this fact, and I am sure no one would argue against his point. He had a nice home and a good job and all things looked on the up and up. I took seriously the words he spoke to us, but I would not say it drove me in anyway. I went on being a kid until I heard the same speech a year later.
I know when my uncle spoke to us about doing better, he was referring to us having better jobs, nicer homes, and maybe even better families. He wanted us to take the advantages we had been given and do more with the opportunities we had at our fingertips. I am sure he imagined us going to a school of higher learning and doing things his dad only dreamed of. He was not at all concerned about our spiritual well-being, but he wanted us to have the very best, materially speaking. I am sure my parents wanted the same for me, but they placed spiritual aspiration above anything this world has to offer.
I was taught as a young boy to love the Lord and to serve Him with all I had. I did not know what this would mean in the years to come, but I was simply obeying what my parents told me to do. My parents both had unsaved parents and did not grow up in a Christian home. They also wanted better for me and did their best to train me in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. They desired that I would do right and please the Lord. My parents still serve in their local church, and they still have a desire to serve the Lord. I have learned much from them, and I pray to pass the torch I was given from them to my own children.
I think of Moses as he gave the charge to the next leader of the Israelites. Joshua had nighty big shoes to fill. Moses was arguably the greatest human leader the children of Israel would ever have, but this in no way diminished the impact Joshua had. God does not measure success on individual feats and grandiose achievements, but He measures it based on our faithfulness to follow His will for our lives. Did we obey Him? Did we have a heart for Him that was tender to His will? Did we do it for His glory or for the applause of man? God is the One who does all the work in us anyway, so we must be a willing and clean vessel He can use.
Where are you today? What torch are you passing on? Maybe you don’t have kids, but there is a circle of people you influence. How about those you work with? How about those you call friends? Are you passing on the torch of godliness? What have they learned from you? Do they know all about your struggles and frustrations, or do you they know the power of your God? May we pass on to others the things of God we have learned, and may we live a life that is worth repeating. In all things may He get the glory and praise. Make your life count and teach that to others.