Generations to come won’t remember your possessions, social status, or academic achievements. What they will remember is the kind of godly legacy your life had on them.
During my parenting years, raising two impressionable children was overwhelming. I read every book published by Dr. James Dobson ( beginning with Dare to Discipline), and listened to Focus on the Family radio broadcasts on parenting. Raised by broken, divorced parents, Dennis and I both wanted to model and instill godly values into our children.
Like most parents, we were busy just trying to survive one day to the next. Dennis was advancing in his Air Force career and I was employed full-time with Civil Service. Long before on-line education, both of us attended college classes at night.
Our world came to an abrupt halt the day our 3-year-old son was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Cancer of the blood, the doctors told us.
Ryan’s condition was so critical, the doctors at the small base we lived requested a medical flight transport to a major military medical center for him to begin treatment. I accompanied him on the flight, while Dennis remained behind trying to pick up the pieces of our shattered world with our oldest 5-year-old son.
Turn Your Hearts Toward Home
Just before this life-altering news, God stirred our hearts when we viewed the Dr. Dobson’s film series Turn Your Hearts Toward Home with our church congregation.
That plane trip became an altar of surrender for me. The struggle between faith and fear collided with the awful reality of what Ryan and our young family would face.
I remember thinking…
My priorities are so out-of-order. Were we too busy to see how sick our baby really was?
It was time to get off the crazy train.
Time to turn my heart toward home.
My hope is that you won’t need a wake-up call like ours.
It is time for parents to turn their hearts toward home.
Dr. Dobson’s original film series is now only available in VHS, but the truth remains. One hundred years from now will your legacy reveal a godly impact on the generations behind you?
Instilling a godly legacy wasn’t my goal when I began turning my heart toward home. Yet, my intentionality of investing quality time and creating life-time memories for my boys did just that.
A couple of days after Ryan’s diagnosis, I ended up in a doctor’s office. (The extreme stress resulted in a raging UTI.) That day God spoke to me through the words of a poster that hung on the wall.
The moment is only temporary, but the memory lasts a lifetime.
I made a decision to refocus my life — and our family’s– so we would remember the memory long after the moment was gone.
Knowing my presence and influence was needed as a stay-at-home wife and mom, I choose to leave my full-time job. Here are a few ways we began to
- Celebrated half-birthdays. Just with our family of four. One special gift, games and ½ a cake.
- Established a weekly family game and movie night
- Daily meal time rituals, like reading child-sized devotions
- Introduced family holiday traditions
Ryan was promoted to heaven three years later.
We were so intent in teaching Ryan how to live and stay alive, it was not until after his death did we realize the godly legacy he entered eternity with. He loved Jesus and spoke of many things he wanted to discuss with Him when he saw Him face-to-face.
Leaving A Godly Legacy is Scriptural
Scripture teaches us to love God with all our hearts, all our souls, and all our strength. No one has as much influence on your children as you do.
You are the one who instills a godly legacy–not the church.
Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up.
Is it time for you to turn your heart toward home?
What changes do you need to make to leave a godly legacy with your children?