We have been thinking since Audrey's birth about how to bring her up to love Christ. It has come up several times in my discussions with Kelli and this week the women's study I am in really delved into this. I am thinking about this alot.
In Joshua 4, God is once again delivering the Isrealites. This time he gives them a really interesting command: "Each of you is to take up a stone on his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the Israelites, 6 to serve as a sign among you. In the future, when your children ask you, 'What do these stones mean?' 7 tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD. When it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever." (vs. 5-7)
And again in verse 21: 21 He said to the Israelites, "In the future when your descendants ask their fathers, 'What do these stones mean?' 22 tell them, 'Israel crossed the Jordan on dry ground.' 23 For the LORD your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over. The LORD your God did to the Jordan just what he had done to the Red Sea [b] when he dried it up before us until we had crossed over. 24 He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the LORD is powerful and so that you might always fear the LORD your God."
This is an awesome picture of passing down a spiritual heritage. More than anything I want Audrey to learn from us, more than anything else that I want her to see, I want her to see that we love Jesus and are following Him with all that we are. I want her to see it, hear us speak of it, experience it with us.
The Isrealites were to put up stones to remind them of all that God had done for them. Stones representing their heritage. Audrey has a great spiritual heritage to take on. A mother who followed Christ when He called her to leave home and serve Him. A mother who longs with all that is in her to disciple people and see them follow Christ. A father who God took a hold of and changed his life. A father who wants to be a godly example to his family. A father who wants to be used for God's purposes.
We need to show this heritage to Audrey and speak of it often. We need to grow in her the desire to follow in this heritage. We must be deliberate about passing down this heritage.
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 says: 4 "Listen, Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is One. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. 6 These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. 7 Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead. 9 Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates."
It is not enough that these words be in our hearts, they must be spoken of regularly in our family. It must infuse all that we are and all that we do.
I want to be a mother who Audrey sees reading the word and praying.
I want to be a mother who Audrey hears worshiping our God.
I want to be a mother who speaks truth and calls Audrey to that truth.
I want Audrey to look at me and learn what it is to follow Christ with her life.
I want Jesus to be so evident in me that Audrey wants Him so much to be in her.
I want to follow Him in such a way that Audrey can't wait to follow Him - can't help but follow Him.
I want God's word to fill her ears, her mind, her heart.
I want her to see me loving people and leading them to follow Christ.
I want her to serve alongside me in the body of Christ.
This heritage is worth fighting for: After I made an inspection, I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, "Don't be afraid of them. Remember the great and awe-inspiring Lord, and fight for your countrymen, your sons and daughters, your wives and homes." Neh. 4:14
There is a song that is playing alot (ALOT) on the radio right now that really speaks to this. It is called Slow Fade by Casting Crowns (you can listen to it in my playlist below.) Every time I hear it I want to beg God for Audrey and for my neices and nephews Cate, Caroline, Cole, Cameron and Cylus (and a new one on the way). I pray that Troy and I can love them and instill this heritage in them.
Train up a child in the way he should go,
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.