Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The fruit of legacy tastes really good

I recently experienced a testimony of what the amazing power of God can do through people who have a multigenerational perspective.

Suzanne and her children came into the church about 15 years ago, wounded, heartbroken, and devastated. Her husband had an affair which lead to the dissolving of the marriage and eventually he moved out of state. As anyone can imagine the spiritual, emotional, and financial hardships created by such a catastrophe were immense.

As a single mother who wanted the best for her family in spite of the difficulty, Suzanne knew she needed God and some stability for her family. She had hopes that the house of God would help. Our church was just starting to catch God’s heart regarding legacy (the generations walking together to seek God’s ways established from one generation to the next). We were beginning to see that because of this design for His house, as God said in Psalms 68, it would become a healthy place for people with devastation in their families. Psalms 68:5-6 NASB A father of the fatherless and a judge for the widows, Is God in His holy habitation. (6) God makes a home for the lonely

Suzanne became caught up with that vision, knowing that the design for God’s house would help her family. She enrolled two of her children (the youngest daughter and son) in our church school and ended up becoming a teacher there.

I watched those kids grow up on God’s house over the years and it was incredible. I watched the young man begin to be embraced by men in our house who saw him as a spiritual son. Older men would spend time with him and draw him together with other young men close to his age and they became a small band of spiritual brothers.

While they all had their struggles growing up they didn’t have to walk through them alone. They had brothers to share their burdens with and older men who would provide the wisdom, perspective, and faith that no matter what they were facing God would get them through it.

As this young man began to grow and mature he made sacrifices to stay with God’s house and the school (he could have played HS athletics in a public school and done very well). He ended up becoming a leader in our school and helped other younger men grow in the things of God. He and his peers became quite a spiritual force, like David’s mighty men. They all went through struggles, failures, and victories staying faithful to God and finding encouragement in each other and those ahead of them in the Lord.

As this young man got into college he continued to pursue God and became a leader among our college students. He also became a very good student graduating with a perfect 4.0 GPA and was a finalist in the Outstanding Senior award for the University as well as the President of the Nurses Christian Fellowship.

During his college years he continued to seek the wisdom and advice of those older than him. One of the young girls he grew up with became a very good friend. He began to sense that she was the one God wanted him to have as a wife. He was very careful to seek counsel and advice from the generations ahead of him as well as his peers. She eventually agreed to a courtship and marriage. In preparation, this young man met diligently every week with an 83 year old spiritual grandfather who gave him Godly advice about marriage. He also walked through courtship and pre-marital preparation with this young lady and another couple who were about 15 years older than them. This couple had their share of disappoints and victories and shared out of God’s Word and their lives valuable perspectives on marriage.

God worked a miracle in his natural family while he was still in High School. His dad returned to the Lord, repented to his family, married a wonderful Christian lady, and now helps lead various groups in his local church in Florida. There was tremendous healing and when his dad now visits his home town he joins with his former wife, his children, and his new wife and kids to worship with the House of God. It is a tremendous testimony of God’s healing and restorative power.

Just last week I had the privilege of walking my second daughter down the isle and giving her to this young man in marriage. And the 83 year old spiritual grandfather helped officiate the wedding ceremony. I cannot tell you the thankfulness, comfort, and joy I had in God. It was amazing to see how God used His multigenerational design for His house to heal, restore, and prepare my future son in law and daughter for marriage. What a comfort to know the good things that have been deposited in their lives by many of God’s people. Is a multigenerational focus on legacy in God’s house a good thing? You had better believe it! The fruit is great and it only strengthens my resolve to work to see God’s house live according to this design.

1 comment:

  1. This is a tremendous testimony, Doug, and a great blessing. Thanks for sharing it with us.