“Grandpa” is one of my favorite roles in life. (As one wag put it, “Grandchildren are your reward for not giving away your kids.”)
Lori and I had the joy of raising four kids. All of them “make us proud” as we see them raising the next generation with wisdom, perseverance, and huge doses of love.
We see the developing character qualities of grandkids somewhat differently than when our children were small. Then we were primarily responsible for nurturing them in God’s truth. Bad attitudes and less-than-stellar behavior had to be dealt with.
Grandparents have a different perspective. Sometimes when we observe small infractions of decorum or childhood mischief we have to turn away, covering a grin, stifling a chuckle.
Have you notice the vocabulary of “the littles” hasn’t changed much over the generations?
“This is mine!”
“He hit me first!”
And that old familiar, “I can do it myself!”
It’s amusing to see shoes on the wrong feet, a shirt on backwards, or a spoonful of cereal turned upside down on the way to the mouth.
A child trying to help with house cleaning or yard work may be well-intentioned. But we know we’re going to have to clean up after them, or help lift the too-heavy-to-handle box.
“Do you want help?” we ask.
“No! I can do it myself!”
How often is this our attitude in serving the Lord? We have all seen independence turn into a stubborn streak. I’m certainly not immune to being territorial, proud or selfish.
But our Lord designed us to need Him – and each other. The Bible pictures the Church as a field, as a building[i], and as a body[ii].
We do best when we function as the Master intended, each using our gifts for the betterment of others. This is well-pleasing to our Audience of One.[iii]
Individually, we need to learn what it means to walk in the Spirit[iv], relying on God in all things. Corporately, we need to learn to work together. That starts with fulfilling the command to “Love one another.”
The other reciprocal (one another[v]) commands flow from it. It’s how we “do LIFE together” as family in Messiah.[vi]
Life in Messiah’s five Key Value Statements conclude with “Strategic partnerships promote Kingdom advance.” We know God never intended for us to “go it alone” in our desire to fulfill the Great Commission.
When this ministry was founded in 1887, the core group consisted of people who acknowledged their dependence upon God. As a “faith ministry” we have depended on the Lord’s supply.
We consider those who pray for us to be a part of the foundation on which LIFE was built. THANK YOU!
Those who send in gifts of support, small or large, are a vital source through whom God supplies needed funds to advance His gospel. THANK YOU!
I’m happy we live in a day when strategic partnerships extend across agency lines. Increasingly we see collaborative efforts with sister ministries who share our commitment to God’s Word and sharing the Good News with our Jewish friends.
To each with whom we are able to share resources and assistance, we say THANK YOU!
“Plays nicely with others” always looks good on a report card.
What kind of grade would God give us?
For sure, I know “I can’t do it myself.” And the task of bringing the gospel to the least-reached won’t be accomplished by LIFE alone.
How would God be pleased to strengthen our strategic partnerships to share God’s heart for the Jewish people[vii] globally? We’d love to hear your ideas.