Our pastor has challenged us to read all 4 of the gospels 4 times in 2013. I've just finished Mark and started Matthew this morning. Of course, you may not do this - but I was very tempted to skip the genealogy in Matthew 1 thinking I know all that. But, as the Lord always does, He started me on another search when I saw 14 generations from Abraham to David and 14 generations from David to the Babylonian exile. I was curious. How many generations from the flood to Abram/Abraham? I found it wasn't 14, but I did find some interesting things in Genesis 11.
Shem, son of Noah, who lived through the flood and saw, heard and felt every terrible moment of what ended life on earth for everyone but his family would have been alive when Abram/Abraham was born. Shem would have been 390 years old and would have lived another 210 years after A. was born. That means that Abram/Abraham surely heard the flood account from someone who heard it from Shem himself. Possibly, A. heard it from Shem first-hand.
My first thought when I realized that was that A.'s faith would have been encouraged and nourished by that testimony. My second thought was "just how much do I listen to or remember from my family's past history?".
My grandmothers taught me most of the spiritual truth I live out today. Their testimony paved the way for me to make personal choices for Christ. But, much of what was taught to me was set aside until I had to learn they were right by me making all the wrong choices.
What about you? Do you really hear the lessons taught in your family from generations past? How quickly do you brush the old granny or old uncle off as just "old and boring"? And, are you sharing your life testimony with the generations following yours?
I'm going to try to reflect today on some of those things my family learned from experience and passed down to me. I'm going to look for God's fingerprints in the lives of those who passed faith experiences on to me. And, I'm going to write some of those things in my journal for those yet to learn or yet to be born.
I hope I don't brush those "old" experiences off so fast in the future. And, I'm going to be honest and share my life experiences as well. How about you? What will you share with the generation that follows you?