Passing on Faith: An Inheritance

(photo originally uploaded to Flickr by sean drellinger)

As I mentioned in my previous post, my senior pastor sent me a couple of articles that sparked the series on Passing on Faith. The first article is from The National Post, written by Brendan T.N. Caldwell who is a CEO of an investment management company.

I thought the parallel of passing on a financial inheritance with the passing on of faith to be a really good picture. Caldwell talks about going from “shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations.” In other words, the first generation works hard to earn financial stability, the second generation enjoys and lives off of that, and the inheritance is gone by the third generation who needs to roll up their sleeves and start over.

“When it comes to faith, our nation is somewhere between the second and third generation. We still enjoy the benefits of a society whose ethics are rooted in faith, but we have forgotten how we got here and we may soon need to rebuild again.”

I think the above quote hits the nail on the head. Now, we can look at that assessment and become discouraged by it, or we can look at that and head into the challenge of “starting over.” While this may not be what we want to do, it is what is put before us.

“In a society that has largely forgotten God, how do parents pass along a spiritual inheritance to their children?”

I think Caldwell states something that is key to answering the question he poses. He reminds parents that our children first and foremost belong to God. He wants to be their father as well as ours, and it is our job as parents to introduce our children to him. We do that by sharing our God stories with them. We need to connect our children with community beyond us who hold the same beliefs and values we do. We also need to stay faithful ourselves be an example of a follower of Christ that our children see from day-to-day.


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