Notes to my Grandchildren
"My good friend and colleague Wes Slough has written some excellent suggestions for grandparents. I commend them to you…"
Solomon spent a lot of time in preparing the generations to come with the wisdom of God. That is the purpose of the book of Proverbs. I have some thoughts to pass on to my grandchildren for the next generation. I will be gone but there will be something left behind. This is what you want to take the time to put it in writing for your children and grandchildren.
The three most important days in your life are the day you are born, they day you are born again, and the day you find out why you were born. Once you trust Christ as Savior, He will reveal to you the purpose for your life. The most natural thing is to live out of our purpose rather than living out God’s purpose. The reason God could do so much through David’s life is that he “did everything God wanted him to do.” (Acts 13:22) That third most important day will determine whether your life accomplishes what God desires.
Twenty, thirty, forty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. As unbelievable as it was, no one in my family had ever been on airplane. The year is 1972, I would be the first. No regrets. No stone unturned. No limb unexplored. No cave un-spelunked. No mountain unclimbed. No nation not visited. When you reach a point in your life that you can’t do these things anymore, you want to be able to say, “I have no regrets. I did all that God put in my heart to do.”
So why not go out on a limb? That’s where the fruit is. Live with daring and boldness! Make life an adventure. There will be risks that others will tell you it is not safe to take. Most people are good at the low hanging fruit, but the bold go after the high, hard-to-get fruit. What if you fall! Record what you learned and climb higher next time. When Bev and I mounted our little brown Pinto and headed into the rising sun toward Florida, there were nay-sayers, but we rode on. As much as we knew we embarked on the great adventure God gave us. When Bev ran for the school board; when I got on the plane to go to Russia, these were not the low limbs. There was a sense of God’s purpose that is even more clear now than it was 40 years ago.
Don't believe the world owes you a living! The world owes you nothing. It was here first. There is no substitute for rolling up your sleeves and sweating. Learn to work, to work hard, to work with excellence. Others may be slackers but you are not. You put your hand to the plow and you do not look back. You look ahead to finish the row. You get up early and stay up late. You do it all with integrity. You earn your way. You make paths where no one else has been in way that has never been done. You never quit.
Your work is an act of worship. Both work and worship come from the same root. This is why God says in Colossians 3:23 ”whatsoever ye do, work heartily, as unto the Lord, and not unto men;” When you excel in your work, you are giving God glory as act of worship.
You are an original, not an imitation. “Always be the first-rate version of yourself instead of a second-rate version of someone else.” Learn from others, but you are not a copy of them. You are an original with a unique purpose. Live in it every day. Be careful not to plagiarize something that is not even close to what you have been created to be.
Be true to who you are (Mike Abraham philosophy)! Never change or pretend to gain acceptance.
Honor your father and mother all their days and continue to do so after they are gone! I have sought to do that. No, they were not perfect. They made mistakes and so have I. Still God’s promise is that His blessing is tied to honoring your father and mother. I am confident that you will fulfill God’s purpose in this.
Never look down on anyone. Live with kindness and generosity toward all others. It is only by God’s goodness that you walk in the shoes you have.
“The secret to getting ahead is getting started.” Don’t procrastinate! If something needs doing, go do it! God will put things in your mind. I have learned that it is best to not ignore those things, but to act quickly on them. This is something I also saw repeated by Dwight Smith (founder of SCPI). Our SCP projects are all of such a nature that we will not likely see them done in our lifetime. But they will never be done if we do not start today.
You need to Sabbath regularly. Sabbath means to cease the work cycle and take a rest to reset yourself physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Ideally, it is on the day of worship. This is a day of rest and of contemplation to equip us for the journey ahead. As others have said, the saw blade becomes dull unless we take time to sharpen it. Sabbath!
Enjoy life! Laugh a lot! God built laughter to heal our souls and bodies.