Friday, June 13, 2008

Leaving a LEGACY (Part two)

Every dad leaves a legacy. We began looking at four ways father's can leave a legacy yesterday. The first two ways were:

#1 Love your wife
#2 Be an encouragement to your kids

Today we will examine two more ways to establish a positive legacy.

#3 Enjoy every mile of the journey

The best description I have heard about being a parent is this bit of wisdom: “Parenting…the days are long and the years are short.”

In his book, Being a Good Dad When You Didn't Have One, Tim Wesemann gives his readers a two-word piece of advice: "Lighten up!" He says that adults laugh an average of 15 times a day while children laugh 400 more times. "Sometime between childhood and adulthood, we lose 385 laughs a day! That's a great loss!" Wesemann says. "Maybe we need not only the faith of a child but the funny bone of one as well."

#4 Be a Role Model

The fourth way to leave a positive legacy is to model what you are teaching.

Here is a powerful quote from Clarence Budington Kelland: “My father didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and he let me watch him do it.”

I can tell you exactly what my father modeled for me, but I would have a hard time remembering any of his lectures. I believe that is an overlooked component of the wisdom expressed in Proverbs: "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." That training should include being a role model, and then the verbal training will sink in. Being an authentic role model makes the message effective.

You are a role model for your children, like it or not. Your children will, to one degree or another, model their lives after you. You have inherited some of your father's characteristics and your children are inheriting some of yours.

You ARE a role model and every dad needs to reflect on that responsibility.

In Deuteronomy we find a great bit of advice for dads: “Just make sure you stay alert. Keep close watch over yourselves. Don't forget anything of what you've seen. Don't let your heart wander off. Stay vigilant as long as you live. Teach what you've seen and heard to your children and grandchildren.”

You are preparing your children to leave home. That is your job as parents. Someday, they'll take what they've learned from you and begin to apply it out in the real world. You've got approximately 18 years to get them ready, so we can't afford to waste any time!

God is challening me as a Father to re-examine the legacy that I am leaving. I hope you will join me in this! Blessings!

(I plan to have a special post Saturday on the Legacy of our Father's. I plan to use COMMENTS left on this blog. So, for those of you that will, please take a moment to post a comment about the legacy that your dad left or is leaving you. Thanks in advance for your assistance)

Pastor Rusty


braveslpn said...

Pastor Rusty,
I learned unconditional love and true commitment from watching my father Marshall Loveless. Through my mother's battle with bipolar disease that lasted for years he was right by her side. Then again as she was diagnosed with brain cancer. He stayed with her and took care of her everyday until he absolutely had to go back to work or lose their insurance coverage. Her battle with cancer was not a long one(7 months) but a hard fought one.Years later he stood by my stepmother when her surgery did not go the way it should have and she could not come off of the ventilator. He along with my step brother and sister had to make the agonizing decision to take her off the vent and let the Lord take her. Again he was beside her everyday in the hospital. He was by both of these ladies sides when they went to be the Lord.He has been a wonderful father to me and my brother throughout our entire lives.I love him dearly.

Anonymous said...

Dear Pastor Rusty, I grew up there in church and the is one thing that I "always knew" is that , we went to church every Sunday, Sunday night and Wednesday night! No questions asked. My mother and father both we faithful to the Lord,and trained there children that the very first "priority was church". That has really been a true "legacy" in my life. As I look back I know that I had the very best the Lord had planned for my life!!! WOW what a "proud" and thankful daughter I am!!!! Susan Baratti Epps