“the surviving members of Ahaziah’s family” 2 Chronicles 22:9
Many Americans can tell you EXACTLY where we were on September 11th when we heard about the towers falling. I was in my car on my way to class at Purdue. I was on the phone with my co-teacher for Sunday School, she had walked past the TV and seen the clip of the first plane hitting and was giving me a play by play of what was happening. By the time I got to class the second plane had hit and the question of, “was that an accident” had been answered with a resounding, “NO”! Class was canceled that morning and most of us stood there watching everything unfold on a wall sized TV in one of the basement classrooms. I stood there for hours just watching, I couldn’t take my eyes off of it. Until finally I looked at my watch and realized that I had totally missed lunch. As I walked across campus to where my car was parked I looked around and noticed that EVERYONE had a phone to their ear. Normally there would be a few here and there talking to someone on their way to class, but not that day. That day everyone was on their cell phones (still relatively new at that point) checking in with their parents, friends and other loved ones. As soon as I got home the TV came back on. At some point in the day I remember Sean coming home from work although I have no idea what time it was. Time had no meaning on the day the towers fell. We watched the footage over and over and over again, all night long. The devastation, the drama, the stories, the horror they replayed it over and over and we sat transfixed unable to look away.
It was my senior year at Purdue, I was in my last semester before student teaching. Sean and I had been married for a year and we had been talking about starting a family, we didn’t want to be old grandparents – we wanted to still be young enough to actually play with them when they finally decided to come along. But then September 11th came along and all we could think about was the possibility of bringing a child into a world like that. Who would want to do that to their baby? We didn’t. And for months that was all we could talk about, how much we wanted a baby, but what kind of loving parent would put their baby into that kind of a world? And then one day, the Holy Spirit spoke straight to my heart. I don’t remember exactly how or when, but suddenly it hit me like a bolt of lightning. “If people like us never have children, this world will never get any better than it is right now”. And I realized that THAT was the Truth.
In this week’s Word of the Day we’ve been reading about the kings of Judah, the lineage of David. And as I prayed with Sean this morning before he left for work that Truth hit me again, our children will change the world! With each link in the lineage of David their world changed by bits and pieces. It never stayed the way it was before. David played his part then passed the harp on to his son Solomon, who played his part and handed it on to his son Rehoboam and so on. Each generation did what God had raised them up to do, in their case rule Judah. In each new section of the story we’ve read the impact that the fathers had on their sons. Did their sons follow their example? Had it been a good example? It all depended on the person, but it becomes fairly obvious as you read that there was definitely an impact from the father-son relationship.
If our great great great grandparents would look at the world we live in today they’d be shaking their heads in shame. This is NOT the America they grew up in, but it IS the America our children are growing up in. It’s filled with Debauchery, Lust, Greed, Sloth, Vengeance, Murder, Doubt, Confusion, Untruth, the list goes on and on. And while our ancestors all dealt with these things, none of them dealt with them in the manner in which we do. Main stream media has changed all that for us, and unless we want to turn it all off and stick our heads in a hole we and our children are exposed to it whether we want to be or not. But God has called us to be in the world but not from the world. While we may be exposed to the Debauchery, Lust and Greed we don’t have to let it overtake us.
God has called us to not just conquer them, He has made us more than conquerors. He has given us the power and the ability through the Holy Spirit to actually DO something about all those negative spirits. Jesus has given us the authority to speak to them and cast them out of our lives and our circles of influence – changing our world in the process. I may not be able to stop all the negative influences around me, but I can certainly do my part! I’d love to say that we can be exposed to them and not let them change us, but I don’t think that’s a good thing. You see, they SHOULD change us! They should shake us up and make us realize that God made ME, He made YOU in order to BE the change we want to see in this world! There’s a song by Matthew West that I absolutely love. It’s called Do Something. (Here is the video with the backstory.) In it he talks about looking around at all the pain and turmoil in the world and shaking his fist at God and asking why in the world He doesn’t step in and DO something. To which God replies, “I did. I created you”!
If people like us don’t procreate and teach our children The Way, in which they should go, this world will never change, it will only get worse. Period. But in reading today’s Word of the Day it’s clear that in just one generation, with the right person in leadership, everything can change. As a mother my number one goal is to show my children the love of Christ for THEM and how to pass that love on to others in a multitude of ways. I want to show them how it’s done by doing it myself first. There is no greater teacher than that of a good role model. They may or may not do what you tell them. But they will definitely do what you do.
This past weekend I attended a family wedding where we had four generations under the same roof and I saw this principle played out right before my eyes. My dad is the spitting image of my grandfather at his age. And not just in looks alone. It’s the way he stands, it’s the way he smiles, it’s the way he dresses and talks. And he doesn’t even mean to do it either. I noticed this and turned to my brother and said, “You’re doomed Bud!” I have the ability to see my future; all I have to do is look at my grandma! And you know what, I’m OK with what I have coming to me because she’s a really awesome lady!
We CAN change this world, it’s simple, just be the YOU God created you to be!
WE can do this! It’s what God made us for.