"You may not know who your descendents will be, but they will know who you are."
- Steve Farrar
Steve’s book, “Anchor Man: How a Father Can Anchor His Family in Christ for the Next 100 Years,” was a rescue from my greatest fears. Despite the fact that my wife and I had departed from the culture of divorce of both of our families, it often felt like a thin veil of consolation. The whisper of our enemy was that a new belief system and a strident commitment to marriage was nothing more than wishful thinking with inevitable failure just around the corner.
A good friend of mine and I would kick concepts and quotes back and forth to one another on a rising tide of hope that we could chart a different 100 year future for our families. Somewhere along the way, the hope of a vibrant, powerful, and intoxicating marriage, capable of wooing my children to a similar course in the faith, was replaced with a mere desperate desire for survival.
My great hope and expectation was just to have my marriage survive. I proudly talked about how our 25 years of marriage was a high watermark of both our families. The yardstick of success being generational, started to fade. I took some consolation in the fact that my first two children getting married had found Christian spouses. Don’t get me wrong, that is a really good thing, but I was settling for something less than God’s intention and my greatest heart’s desire.
But hope is rising, I want my life to be a floor and not a ceiling for my children. Our marriage is no longer just surviving, but thriving, and progressively so. My great hope for my children is that they would find greater glory and more restoration than my wife and I realized.
At a corporate retreat last week, I told the attendees that the greatest obstacle I had overcome (part of an organizational health exercise) was that I had made it to 25 years of marriage. In that very moment, God reminded me of my son’s toast at my daughter’s recent wedding. He reminded me of the “more” I had hoped for was being found. My son told his sister and her fiancé:
“I pray that your wedding day is the worst day of your marriage. Because my experience has been that each day is the most glorious only to be exceeded by more in the next.”
He went on to talk about the offer of Christianity is life, and life abundant. Living into a rich marriage is simply choosing to live a better story and finding one… progressively richer each day. That was his experience and his great hope for them.
In that moment, I realized that by God’s grace and infinite mercy, my ceiling was becoming their floor. Not only that, but God is teaching me that he intends to keep raising the roof on my expectations all the way into eternity.
There is life, restoration, abundance, and healing in the offering.
It is the great hope and reality of the gospel.
It can be realized in greater measure in our lives and progressively into the generations of our family.
I may not know my descendants but they might know about me. Hopefully they will know less about me and much more about the Father and the life He intends, because of me.
Is each day of your life exceeded by the glory of the next?
Is each generation of your family doing the same?
What needs to change in the life you are living to woo your family generationally into a progressively more glorious life?