You are not alone in this world. You were never meant to be alone. Faith is supposed to come to us through a long line of men and women who know God and love Him. Sadly, few of us have a heritage like that. Some of you are first-generation Christians. Your parents gave you no positive spiritual legacy. For some of you, your parents were the first in the family to come to Christ. That is my situation.
My journey with Jesus began when I was just three months old. My mom was thirty-two years old at the time and was in her second failing marriage. She came to the point where she did not want to live any more. In fact, she was so despondent and irrational that she was thinking of putting me and my brother in a car and driving us off a cliff. But God had other plans. One day in the depths of despair, she called a friend, who immediately came to the house and shared with her the Good News of God’s offer of salvation through Jesus Christ. My mom responded to God’s grace and put her full faith and trust in Christ for the forgiveness of her sins, and her life changed! From that day forward, she did all she could to impress my heart with a love for God.
My father, then fifty-four years old, was not a believer; in fact, he was actively opposed to spiritual things. It created great tension in my parents’ marriage. When I was a sophomore in high school they divorced. It was a time of great pain in my life, but the divorce was only the tip of the iceberg as we discovered that my father had been unfaithful to my mother. I was devastated. (I will share more about my father’s part in my life story in a later chapter.)
I wish I had been blessed with a long legacy of Christian parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents. Instead, I am the first generation of Christian fathers in my family tree. Perhaps you come from a long line of believers. Your call is to take the torch of faith that has been passed to you from your parents and grandparents, and pass it on to your children and grandchildren. Maybe, like me, you are one of the first Christians in your family. What an opportunity God has given you to launch and build a family that will increasingly impact this world for Christ and His Kingdom for generations to come! Multigenerational faithfulness has to start somewhere!
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