Maybe you came from a broken family. Maybe your life didn’t go as planned for a million reasons. You made some sketchy choices you wish you could undo, used some wrong words, and made bad friends. Guess what? You can still leave a strong family legacy. Each of us has a part to play and we all—yes all of us, no matter how tired or broken—can have a strong family legacy. God wants to see us thrive. So how do we do that, regardless of our circumstances?
Simple as it sounds, I think God is looking for people who are simply willing to put in the work, to be okay with being a little different. Some of my favorite biblical characters were everyday people willing to do uncharacteristic things. They came from completely different pasts. David was only taking bread to his brothers when he ended up fighting Goliath. Esther was simply following God’s will and saved her people, an entire nation of Jews, from complete eradication in her country. Ruth, recently widowed, loyally went with her mother-in-law to a new country even though she didn’t know what the outcome would be. And God honored her by providing her a new, loving husband with whom she built her own strong family legacy. How strong? Ruth is literally in the genealogy of Jesus Himself!
God doesn’t always ask us to be extraordinarily different, but He does want our obedience. Why? It’s not to hurt us. It’s to help us grow. God wants more for us, so he asks more of us. He wants our families to be so strong, they leave a legacy for our future relatives. Ruth, like many of the other characters in the Bible, demonstrates for us three key ways to help us live in a way that will help us build a strong family legacy.
Three Ways to Build a Strong Family Legacy
- Be willing. God is looking for servants who are willing to do whatever, whenever—however He asks. This isn’t always comfortable, but God can use hearts in this posture. Are you willing to do whatever He asks of you? Including showing gracious love and self control when your (kid, spouse, in-law) is getting on your last nerve for the 100th time today?
- Be secure. In other words, stop worrying so much about what other people think of you. This step is completely necessary to leaving a legacy that matters. If you’re going to be a family that stands out, you have to be willing to … stand out. Be secure in who you are in Christ. You won’t always fit in, because you’re called to a different standard. If God asks you to do something that isn’t popular, to be someone who doesn’t fit in, you have to be okay with being who He’s calling you to be. He made your family unique for a purpose. You’ll leave a legacy that matters by focusing on pleasing God with what you and your family do, not impressing others.
- Be ready. This one sounds the easiest, but it’s actually the hardest of all three. For God to use us, we have to be ready in season, out of season, and everything in between. Olympic athletes train for years and years for a three-minute race. When it’s competition time, they can run with confidence because they already put in the work. God asks you to do the same. Read your Bible, pray, build your daily life on a close relationship with Christ. When your child needs your wisdom or your spouse needs your encouragement on a random Tuesday, you’ll recognize an opportunity to be used by God, and you’ll respond quickly. You were ready.
Like good parents, God asks us to do our best, because He knows that’s how the best will come out of us. If we fill our souls with God, He’ll fill our lives with purpose. He wants us to live lives that count, and He’s waiting to use us! Do you believe you can have a strong family legacy? Because you can! Live a life that matters: be willing, stop caring what others think of you, and be ready. Build a strong family legacy starting today. God is looking for willing hearts and everyday people to build His Church.