Spiritual Legacy

Spiritual Legacy

By Marilyn Pritchard

In one of Jill Briscoe’s talks at our women’s Bible study several years ago, she told of her unchurched background and how she came to Christ when she was in college. Her husband Stuart, who came from a Christian family, asked her, “Who prayed for you?” He assumed that someone in Jill’s family must have prayed for her salvation, but Jill couldn’t answer, until she found a Bible belonging to her uncle who had passed away. The Bible was worn and well-marked, and from its pages fell a piece of paper with her name on it. Here was her spiritual benefactor, the one who had prayed for her.

That made me think of my own children. Although my husband and I pray for them, how many generations in our family have carried their faith forward? What is our spiritual heritage?

In going through some of my husband’s maternal grandmother’s things, we found a letter she received from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, dated August 23, 1963, assuring her of her salvation and encouraging her to pray. This letter was evidence to me that my children’s faith went back at least three generations on their father’s side.

If you have evidence of a strong spiritual heritage, you can thank the Lord. “You have given me the heritage of those who fear your name,” says Psalm 61:5b. If your parents or grandparents are still living, ask them about their own spiritual journeys, or what they remember about their parents’ and grandparents’ faith. Then, pass those stories on to your own children. Psalm 145:4 says, “One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts.”

Even if you are a first-generation believer, you can start building a spiritual legacy for your children now. Psalm 119:111 says, “Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart.” We have been given God’s Word as a heritage, which we can pass on to our own children.

Just as the Israelites set up landmarks at certain locations in their travels where God made Himself known to them, we should leave spiritual markers for our descendants, so they will see what God has done for us. These can be in form of:

  • Notes written in your Bible and the books you’ve read
  • Journals and letters written to your children
  • Stories, poems, or artwork that demonstrate your God-given gifts as well as your faith
  • Scrapbooks or mementos highlighting how God has worked in your family’s life

These are just a few ideas to help you leave a spiritual legacy for your children and future generations. Here’s a list of articles from Just Between Us (JBU) that will give you more resources for passing down your faith. We pray they will help you start, or continue, a long-lasting heritage. 

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