Thoughts for Today
Family members often hand down sentimental and valuable items to their children--antiques, rings, the family Bible, and various forms of wealth. My wife's grandmother lived almost 104 years. She did not have many earthly possessions, but her godly lifestyle has been handed down to family members. In her family are ministers, medical and business professionals, and church and community leaders. Grandma's hand-me-downs, though not silver and gold, made an eternal difference.
Other hand-me-downs can result in pain, dysfunction, and aimless direction. Peter described them as "the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers" (1 Peter 1:18). Futile behavior patterns, traditions, and lifestyles are often handed down from generation to generation.
A child sits in a restaurant with his parents and observes their preoccupation with drinking alcohol. Unknowingly, they may be training the child to take the first step that could lead to addiction.
A husband shows no respect for his wife and, by example, teaches this behavior to his son. His son will likely show a lack of respect for his wife. Abusive parents and spouses are often the products of abuse or neglect themselves.
Consider this …
What kind of hand-me-downs are you preparing for your children or grandchildren? Can you honestly encourage them to follow your example--as you are following Christ's?
None of us are perfect. But we need to ask God to help us not only teach our children His ways, but to live them. When we fail, we need to admit our mistakes to God--and to our loved ones--and move on. Being willing to humble ourselves and ask forgiveness is a valuable hand-me-down too!
Father, help me to offer my children hand-me-downs that will make a positive difference in their life. Help me to live in such a way that I can honestly invite them to follow me as I follow you. In Jesus' name …
These thoughts were drawn from …The Ten Commandments: Applying the Foundations of Living to My Personal Life by Jimmy Ray Lee, D.Min. Knowing that there are absolutes that define moral conduct and ethical decisions is essential for believers surrounded by relativistic values. This guide helps us understand God's boundaries. It shows how the Ten Commandments apply today. It also discusses the biblical laws on which the legal codes of every civilized society are based. This guide is written in a way that helps people see the Ten Commandments in light of today's problems. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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