Parents try to get their children ready to leave the nest. As they grow, the basics are to feed, clothe and shelter them. Education is also expected by our society. Most parents hope that this will lead to higher education which will lead to gainful employment.
Some prepare their children for success in these areas better than others.
There is a balance between doing everything for your kids where they can’t function on their own and doing nothing for them where they don’t feel supported and loved. Sometimes it feels like walking a tightrope!
Children will often attain the educational levels that their parents attain. When they are encouraged, they will exceed them. Unfortunately, the poverty cycle often continues this same pattern. If parents are uneducated or underemployed, this doesn’t often lend to breaking the cycle because the next generation may not be taught to value the things that lead to educational or occupational success.
Sometimes when we attain success, we become so enamored with our achievements that we believe we are self-made. If I look at my own life, I remember that I was taught a work-ethic by my parents. I was given an expectation of higher education so that I sought the highest degree for my profession. If my parents had not instilled these in me, I would not be the person I am today.
This Sunday, we will continue with the theme, “With What Shall I Come Before the Lord” for the fourth Sunday in Lent. Our lectionary scripture is rather short: Joshua 5:9-12. We are seeing the Israelites move from the desert to the promised land. We know that they were receiving manna for food as they wandered and now they will eat from the what the land will provide. This breaks the cycle of dependence in a way – they will work to feed themselves now.
The temptation will be to forget that God has provided for our needs. After several generations, they may forget that God took care of them in their time of need. They may develop a sense of entitlement rather than blessing of the land they have. Of course, we may have that same sense of entitlement without even realizing it.
This Sunday we’ll examine that we continue to bring our sense of dependence on God even though God has designed us for independence. This dichotomy is important for us as people of faith for our own happiness but also as we spread this Good News to others! I hope you’ll join us for worship on Sunday!
Don’t forget! You can follow Pastor Sam’s ongoing daily devotions for Lent at www.precedinggrace.blogspot.com