Summary: How does a father leave a legacy? 1. Cherish your family greatly v7 2. Love your family deeply v8a 3. Invest into your family personally v8b 4. Labor diligently for your family v9 5. Live godly before your family v10 6. Influence your fam
Dads, have you ever wondered what your family will say about you in ten years? Have you ever wondered how the faith of your family will look in a hundred years? Have ever desired to leave a little for the grand children or great-grands so that they will have something for you in years to come? My grandmother is always telling me that she wished she was rich so that she could leave the grandchildren a little piece of money.
Back in 2000, the Epcot Center had a new feature as you first walk in. There were giant slabs of black granite all over – tons and tons of granite – and a big sign that says “Leave Your Legacy”. For a certain fee they will take your picture and photo chemically transfer it onto these granite rocks, so that for all of time your picture will be on this granite stone. And hundreds if not thousands of people have put their little, tiny picture on these big granite stones.
Why do we do that? Because, down deep inside, everybody wants to leave a legacy, and everybody wants to feel like their life counts, that their life matters, that we’ve left our mark while we pass through this life.
We all at times wish that we can leave something of ours or us to give to our children. Even though none of my grand-parents were monetarily rich, they were rich in other ways.
I remember my mother’s father visiting us when I was a teenager. The fondest memory I have is PawPaw’s faith. He was a broad shouldered man with a deep rich voice that thunder when he prayed. And his prayers were full of tears. I also remember Granddaddy’s, my Dad’s father, love for the Bible. I walked into his house one day and seeing me sitting at the table with his Bible open in front of him, his Sunday School lesson to the side and another book open studying.
That same faith that my grandfathers’ had was passed on to my parents. And they learned and grew in the faith of their father. My Dad and Mom passed on to us their faith and we are learning and grow in it with the hopes to pass the legacy on to our children. My grandparents may not have been rich in the world’s standards, but they were rich toward God, and that wealth they have passed on.
So since it is Fathers Day, I thought we’d look at this subject about how do you leave a lasting legacy?
The apostle new well what to do to leave a lasting legacy. In 1 Thessalonians 2, he tells the believers there what he did while with them. From Paul’s pen, we find six life habits that will build a legacy to pass on to our families.
How does a father leave a legacy?
1. Cherish your family greatly v7
To cherish = to hold in high regard, to esteem highly,
to place a great value on
Paul compares the care he gave the Thessalonians to the care given a nursing infant by his mother. It is the care that places the welfare of the child above that of the mother. A mother would rather face harm than to have her child harm.
“The figure implies a special effort to protect and to provide for every need, even to the extent of great sacrifice” (Expositor’s Bible Commentary).
I remember well the afternoon when Lindan was born and how my protective spirit kicked in when she was given her first shots. Her full lung cry broke my heart. I wanted to slap a few nurses around, grab her up to protect her from any other hurts.
2. Love your family deeply v8a
The term used by Paul is “affectionate longing.” It is a term that is used in the nursery but is masculine and tender. It conveys or describes:
• A yearning for
• A fond desire for
• to fill a need for
• A heart’s appetite for
In other words, our heart’s appetite is to be for our family.
I had a professor in college who traveled a good bit during the school and over the summer breaks. One day, he shared with a group of us about one of his trips and then mentioned that he has not seen his family in weeks during that trip. He shares that if he is away from his wife and four children too long is body being to ache. He is literal in pain for his family.
That is the picture that we need to see here. Paul’s heart longed to be with the church. Our hearts are to ache for our family. After Amy and the children have been away for more than a day or so, when they return home, I am so glad to see them that I could eat them up.