Making the hand-off

baton.pngMaribel, one of my daughters, was a runner in high school. My could she run! I loved watching her explode with energy at the start and seconds later cross the finish line – usually first! One of her races was the 4 x 100 meter event, a race with four runners. Each person carries the baton for 100 meters. The critical moment is the hand-off. The outgoing runner does not look backwards, even as she extends her hand to receive the baton from the one coming at full speed towards her. It is the responsibility of the incoming runner to set that baton into the outstretched hand and not let go until the outgoing runner takes hold of it.

That is what is we are doing at Faith Discovery Church all of the time, but with great intention this week of Vacation Bible School. Dozens of volunteers invest hundreds of hours to make the 15 hours of the school a great experience for the children who will attend.  The school director started planning 6 months ago!  Is it just to have fun? Not really though we aim to make it a week filled with excitement. We are planning to place the baton of faith into the hands of about 300 children, praying for a successful hand-off of a knowledge of God’s love and care that they can know personally as a foundation for life!

In the Scripture, there are multiple passages that encourage parents and leaders to make the transmission of the faith a priority choice.  The Psalm sings, “We will not hide these truths from our children; we will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord, about his power and his mighty wonders. For he issued his laws to Jacob; he gave his instructions to Israel. He commanded our ancestors to teach them to their children, so the next generation might know them— even the children not yet born— and they in turn will teach their own children. So each generation should set its hope anew on God, not forgetting his glorious miracles and obeying his commands.” (Psalm 78:4-7, NLT)

Moses told the people of the Lord to “Write these commandments that I’ve given you today on your hearts. Get them inside of you and then get them inside your children. Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning to when you fall into bed at night.” (Deuteronomy 6:6-7, The Message)  My Dad often said that “Faith is better caught than taught.” Isn’t that a great phrase? And it’s true.  The lessons at church are wonderful, but seeing faith lived in the home; in love, in forgiveness, in compassion, with integrity, makes it real.  Authentic faith is not about a  Sunday experience; it is a way of life that honors God and enters into eternal life, starting today.

So, would you pray specifically for the ‘hand off’ of faith to happen this week?
In your own circle of friends and family, pray to live out the Truth infectiously.

I pray that your week is blessed by His joy, filled up with His peace, and secured by His amazing love.

Here is a word from the Word. “But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you. You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:14-17, NLT)

________

Abba, help those of us who are going ahead
To lay down a trail that is clearly marked for those who come behind.
Keep us faithful and true.
Help us to allow no gap between our words and deeds,
To live what we believe, so that we can hand off a faith that is compelling to
The next generation.

Bless our staff with patience, insight, and Your grace this week.
Make the Word bright and clear by Your Spirit.
In Jesus’ Name. Amen

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