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Categorized | From the Pulpit

An American Heritage

An American Heritage

Pastor Jim Howard,
First Baptist Church
233 S. Main, Cedar Springs

Over the years I have come to appreciate the time that I spent with my grandparents as a small child and then as a young adult. I have many precious memories of the things that were said and the things that were done. It has been said that certain smells or odors will bring back the most vivid of memories, and I believe that it is true.
I recall as a small child going to grandma and grandpa’s dairy farm when I was just knee high to a grasshopper. It was during the winter, and in those days the snow seemed to be so much deeper than what we get today. I had gotten up early with grandpa to go out and do the milking. As we left the house by way of the garage I can remember the sound of the screen door slamming behind us, and then watching as grandpa struggled with the storm door as he pushed the snow in getting it open. Imagine my glee as a small child when I saw all that beautiful white snow.
Grandpa stepped out and headed for the barn calling for me to follow. I took two steps and suddenly realized that I could go no further. I was trying to step into the tracks left by my grandpa, but his steps were too far apart for me to follow. Several yards from the garage, grandpa looked back and realized my dilemma. He immediately came back and began taking much smaller steps in order for me to follow. It took grandpa twice as long to reach the barn, and I have never forgotten that experience or that lesson.
My grandpa left me a heritage of experiences and memories that will last my whole life. Whether he knew it or not, he was teaching that young lad lessons that would be passed on from generation to generation.
Timothy (2 Tim. 3: 14-17) was another who did not forget his heritage. The Apostle Paul praised Timothy for continuing in the faith, for taking to heart the lessons learned as a child and then in turn, sharing those lessons and experiences with others.
Many of you who are reading these words are already reminiscing about your own experiences with parents and grandparents. The lessons learned at the knee of someone respected and honored will stay with you your entire life through.
The substance of that heritage and the truth of the Word must also be shared with the younger generation. The children and young people of our communities are growing up without an accurate understanding of what life is all about. The end result of the instruction received by Timothy from his mother (Eunice) and his grandmother (Lois) was wisdom and salvation (2 Tim. 3: 15b). Knowledge is not synonymous with wisdom. Knowing your Bible is not enough! It requires faith in the God of the Bible (Eph. 2:8-9)!
The accumulation of head knowledge will mean very little without the practical application process. Children learn very early the difference between sincerity and hypocrisy. Teach how to live and live what you teach!
Being a parent and grandparent is one of the greatest privileges on earth. What a tremendous responsibility and opportunity to train the next generation of leaders. Don’t abdicate your privilege. Dare to make a difference just as Eunice and Lois did!

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One Response to “An American Heritage”

  1. Good word! I love the visual of “smaller steps” to help our children.


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