Friday, May 1, 2015

The Family Legacy

Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us.  Philippians 3:17
A Legacy is something handed down from an ancestor or a predecessor or from the past or something that someone has achieved that continues to exist after they stop working or die.

Family is where our roots take hold and from there we grow.  We are molded within a unit, which prepares us for what we will experience in the world and how we react to those experiences.  Our Legacy tells us we came from some place and are leaving a mark on the future.  Handed down to us was a last name that may have proved to be a blessing or a curse.  Half of your name belongs to you.  The other half is shared with others.  Token acceptance of your name without responsibility for its reputation is thoughtless disrespect for those closest to you.  Family history has a marked impact on every one of us. 
Your parents gave you your “given” name and possibly put no more thought into it than it just sounded right.  Whatever name your parents gave you, you will give it meaning.  A name is a mark of identity separating you from others but it is more.  Your name should be treasured for in it is your reputation, purpose, value and legacy.
A family legacy is the overriding impact, influence and/or materials passed down to the next generation from the actions or resources of the generation(s) before.  Your family handed down a legacy.  Now it is your family’s turn to pass it on.  You cannot control what the following generation does with the legacy you leave.  All you can do is be responsible for your generation. 
The Four “C’s of a legacy:”
  1. CAPITAL - Material or financial legacies are the most commonly considered legacies.  When we pass any kind of legacy down, we have to trust the next generation to treasure it.  The problem with financial inheritance legacies – It is left by one generation, then the next generation comes and spends it all instead of adding to it and leaving something to pass on to the next generation.
  2. CHARACTERWhat we are is what remains when we are gone.  Character is the core of the legacy we will leave.  God isn't interested in you just having a good reputation; He is interested in you being a godly person!
  3. CONDUCT - How you live affects your legacy.  Our kids learn not from what we say but what we do.  Of all the things that are caught not taught values are the most learned by lifestyle.  We can say we believe things but unless we live them, our children will live just like us.   Change yourself and you will change your children's destiny!
  4. CONVICTIONS - The greatest legacy a family can leave is the impact of their faith on the next generation.  What is it that you hold dear?  Do your children really know what is important to you?  What is the most important treasure you desire to leave others?
We take the God events in our lives for granted, but our children will lose the blessing of seeing the Hand of God through our stories unless we choose to pass them down.

Scripture to Claim:
O God, You have taught me from my youth, and I still declare Your wondrous deeds. And even when I am old and gray, O God, do not forsake me, until I declare Your strength to this generation, Your power to all who are to come.   Psalms 71:17-18

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