Broken People, Faithful God
Passing It On
Day 1: Read Judges 2:7-10. Joshua’s generation both heard stories of God’s faithfulness and experienced it with their own eyes. Yet the generation after Joshua “did not acknowledge the Lord or remember the mighty works he had done for Israel.” Joshua’s generation failed to pass their faith on to the next generation. Thus, they quit passionately pursuing God. The more we love God, the more we love what He loves! (Matthew 22:36-39) The greater your love grows for God the greater it grows for others. Your faith is passed on through their words and actions! In Sunday’s message Cory used three chairs to represent the regression of Israel’s relationship with God. Chair 1 represents a person committed to love and follow God; the person sitting in chair 2 knows and loves God but compromises his standards; finally, the person in chair 3 chooses not to acknowledge God or the things He has done. What chair are you sitting in now? What behaviors in your life support your conclusion? What behaviors would be a cause for skepticism? Ultimately, how has your life positively impacted others’ faith? Write down your thoughts or share them with a friend.
Day 2: Read Psalm 78:1-8. Israel’s rollercoaster relationship with God was a reminder of God’s patient, unending love for people and Israel’s failure to pass on their faith. Read further into the Psalm to understand the history. The influence of God’s love seldom lasted beyond a generation. Our faith must be passed on, so others can know God themselves. Our influence has an impact on the future trajectory of those who are around us and those who come behind us. With whom has God given you influence? Spouse, child, co-worker, neighbor? Write down the names of 3 to 5 important people to you. Take some time to pray for them and their love for God. Where do they need encouragement in their faith?
Day 3: Read Deuteronomy 6:1-9. Passing faith along to children or to anyone else cannot be left to happenstance. Intentionality is required to influence others to know and become like Jesus. Most of us chose to follow Jesus because someone was intentional about sharing their faith with us! Deuteronomy 6 says our motivation to do this is uncompromising love for God. It then becomes our responsibility and privilege to see everything we do as an opportunity to influence others. (See 1 Corinthians 10:31) Giving God a spot on your list of priorities isn’t enough. He wants to be in the center of everything you do. Only then will He be able to use you as the influence He created you to be. Go back to the list you made yesterday. Beside each person’s name write down a potential next step: text a friend to meet for lunch, take your spouse on a date, tell your child a story, etc.
Day 4: Read Joshua 24:1-16. One of the best ways to pass your faith along is through stories. God is writing His grand narrative and your life story is a part of it. Just like the nation of Israel, God is at work in your everyday life! Before we shake our heads at Joshua’s generation and their failure to pass on their faith, consider this. Do you see His miraculous work in your life? When have you told a personal story of God’s faithfulness to another? Or do you fall into the trap of seeing the problems and details of life that you walk right past God’s work without even noticing? So where is God at work in your life? Remember, God is not bound to only working in the good circumstances. He actually works through our fears and failures too. Write down a couple stories or say them aloud to yourself right now. Plan to share one of these stories today.
Day 5 Reflect. Remember who you are in Jesus. Ephesians 1:3-8 teaches that if you have accepted that Jesus died to pay the price for your wrongdoings, you are an adopted child of God! Timothy Keller writes, “The moment we believe, God imputes Christ’s perfect performance to us as if it were our own, and adopts us into His family. In other words, God can say to us just as He once said to Christ, ‘You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased’.” God loves you no matter what you’ve done, or not done. Receive His forgiveness and recognize your life as a story filled with examples of His grace and mercy, ultimately His love. Then, resolve to sit in the first chair, commit to love what God loves; commit to share His love with those He has given you influence. Pray to the Spirit for eyes to see Him at work in your life. Pray for the list of people you made on day 2. Pray for awareness of opportunities to share your story with them.