“They feared the Lord but also served their idols. Still today, their children and grandchildren continue doing as their fathers did.” 2 Kings 17:41
As I read this verse a few days ago I was struck by the power that one generation can have over another. It will slow you in your tracks to realize that your attitude towards the Lord will impact your children and grandchildren.
Next to Jesus, dads may have the most powerful influence over the life of their children. In the days leading up to Father’s Day, this truth has greatly impacted me.
The foundation of parenting has to be a reliance on the power of the gospel, the Spirit of God, and prayer. These are the things that will impact future generations for the glory of God. When all is said and done, a souled out love for Jesus Christ – evidenced in prayer, time in the Word, and walking in that love (or lack thereof) – is what will have the greatest impact on your children and grandchildren.
In 2 Kings 17, when it came to loving God, the dads were on the fence. In the eyes of their children and grandchildren, their fear of the Lord was eclipsed by their service to idols. We will do things like dad did (or didn’t). May dads continually step up to the plate of godly parenting. This will only be possible as dads step up to the plate of godly living out of a heart wholehearted devotion to God.
In parenting, my hope is to not see the greatest fruits of my labors of love on this side of Heaven. I want God to do things in and through my children greater than He has done in my life. And greater than that, I want God to do things in and through my grandchildren and great-grandchildren. May your lasting legacy be children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren who do as their fathers did – fear the Lord and NOT serve idols.