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 Enhancing Efforts for WoWW Ministry

 Minks

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Godly and Enduring Generational Patterns

                                                                    By  Doris Minks

Are we passing on to the next generation godly and enduring values? Our relationship with God, dependence on His Word and Prayer, and living out these principles in our lives, are the best examples to our children.  This is not an easy task for military parents living in a transitory society, but God is our helper.

 

''In the fear of the Lord one has confidence and his children will have a refuge.''  Proverbs 14:2

  Am I providing a safe haven for my children because of  my reverential trust

   in the Lord ?

   Am I giving them the godly love which encompasses all these following qualities:

   L LOVE for the Lord and for others (Deuteronomy 6:5)

   O OBEDIENCE to the Lord (John14:21)

   V VIRTUOUS life (Proverbs31:10-31)

   E ENDURING legacy (2 Samuel 7:28-29 )

 

Because of who God is and our relationship to Him, we can be examples to our children.

  Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through

   all generations" (Psalm 145:13).

  "But you, O Lord, sit enthroned forever; your renown endures through

   all generations" (psalm 102:12).

   Will all our children follow the godly example we set for them?

 

No, not all will, at least not necessarily according to our desires or time table, but our faith is in God, who is not willing that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9).

 

We have the Biblical example in Judges 2:10 of a whole generation who grew up not knowing the Lord or what He had done for Israel.  Who failed them?

 

Our part is to teach our children God's Word and to pray earnestly for them.

  ''How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your Word"

   (Psalm 119:9).

  "The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective" (James 5:16).

 

Here are some examples of godly instruction to live by and to pass on to our children:

  "Hear!  O Israel:  The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children.  Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up" (Deuteronomy 6:4-7).

 

Further on in in Deuteronomy 11:8-19 are more admonitions to heed:

  Verse 8   Observe all the commands.

  Verse 13  Faithfully obey the commands.

  Verse 13  Love the Lord your God.

  Verse 13  Serve Him with all your heart and soul.

  Verse 16  Be careful not to be enticed to turn away.

  Verse 18  Fix these words in your heart and mind.

  Verse 19  Teach them continually to your children and to their children.

 

Trying to raise godly children in a cross-cultural setting has its unique challenges.  Military and missionary families, embassy and international business families, all learn to live abroad and hopefully cope with the many changes that confront them.  A stable and godly home and the positive attitude of the parents enables the children to better adjust to the constant moves.  As C. S. Lewis so aptly said, "If you know where you are going, you will never go astray.''

 

Dr. Ruth Hill Useem, the social scientist who coined the term ''third culture," defined it as "the lifestyle created, shared, and learned by those who are from one culture and are in the process of relating to another."

 

As military families, our children are Third Culture Kids, TCKs. They share a third culture influenced by both their parents' home culture and the culture where they live. They can relate to both cultures, though not having full ownership of either.

 

TCKs often have confused loyalties about politics, values, and patriotism, but they are able to develop special relationships with people throughout the world. They work toward a cultural balance, an unconscious knowledge of how things are and work in a particular community.

 

TCKs are also called ''global nomads." An appropriate description of global nomads is found in an old gypsy proverb: ''We are all wanderers on this earth.  Our hearts are full of wonder, and our souls are deep with dreams.''  As someone also said, ''A TCK is neither fish nor foul--not fully a part of either country, but a blending of the two.''

 

As parents and grandparents, we have a responsibility to be consistent, loving examples in our manner with our children. We are to help them develop a right

self-esteem or healthy self-image:

  a sense of belonging, of being loved

  a sense of worth and value--the inner belief and feeling that  "I count ; I am

  of value."

  a sense of being competent and feeling confident: "I can do this task."

 

We have a remarkable power to preserve or damage the self-esteem of a child.  In all our relationships, initial manner can convey either respect and love or disappoint-

 

ment or disinterest. A study was done at the University of California on a thousand middle-class boys and their families, following them from pre-adolescence through young manhood.  Home experiences and childhood influences were compared among those with high and low self-esteem.  The following characteristics emerged :

  The children with high self-esteem were clearly more loved and appreciated

    at home.

  They came from homes where the parents were strict in their approach

    to discipline.

  The homes of those with high self-esteem were characterized by democracy

    and openness.

  Boundaries were established, thereby providing for the personalities to grow

   and develop.

 

Are we growing up in Christ, or are we allowing the world to define who we are?  We gain a better picture of ourselves as we reflect on the reactions of the important people in our lives. But a far more valuable perspective is given in 1 Corinthians 13:10-13:

 

    ''But when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.  When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.  Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.  And now these three remain; faith, hope and love.  But the greatest of these is love.''

 

Most importantly, are we reflecting Gods glory and allowing Gods Word to reveal who we are? Second Corinthians 3:13 perfectly expresses for us this higher goal:

 

And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lords glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

 

My purpose in life is to glorify God, and my hope and prayer is that I am a loving, godly example in word and deed to my children and grandchildren; that they too will pass on the enduring generational patterns wherever they are. 

 

May Romans 1:5 be said of all our military families: "I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world."

 

Submitted by Doris Waldrop Mincks (719) 528 8917

Waldropde@earthlink.net

 

 

 

 
     

 


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1  Mil Ethics Paper in MSO CI from Dunlap     CalDunlap 2009-09-11 3016
2  Funding for Vice Presidents of AMCF     Kaltenbach 2009-09-11 3128
3  Mobilizing Churches to Pray for the Military     Prindle 2009-08-12 3225
4  Training of Military Ministry Leaders     Reifsnyder 2009-08-12 3296
5  Reconciliation Ministry     Ogwang 2009-08-12 3109
 Enhancing Efforts for WoWW Ministry     Minks 2009-08-12 3090
7  Including "Other Support Organizations"     Barnes 2009-08-12 3134
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