I asked a leading question, because I wanted to get the ball rolling. My goal? To provide an opportunity for my youngest son to learn about his ancestors.
No ancestry.com, no searching an archive, no electronics necessary. He was hearing it straight from his uncle, and I enjoyed witnessing every minute.
What’s the question I asked? “Can you tell Nathan what you remember about your grandfather and his grandfather?”
Oh, to have had a camera to capture the way my brother-in-law’s eyes lit up, as I could almost see his mind traveling back in time and pulling up memories of years long gone by. Nathan listened intently and asked further questions, as his uncle recounted stories of the family in Egypt. Then, do you know what my son did that next day? He sat down and wrote down as much as he could remember from the conversation, so he wouldn’t forget it and could then, one day, tell it to his children.
Think back on your Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays with family? Did anyone talk about the past, the stories of those who made you who you are today? Did you talk with your children or grandchildren and share about what your family did for holidays when you were little?
What can you do to pass on your heritage to the generations to come? What can you do to learn from the elders in your own family before it’s too late? The Lord told the Israelites what they should do with what he had told them:
Imprint these words of mine on your hearts and minds, bind them as a sign on your hands, and let them be a symbol on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your city gates, so that as long as the heavens are above the earth, your days and those of your children may be many in the land the Lord swore to give your fathers.*
Don’t deny yourself or your children the opportunity to share the wisdom of the ages.
Grace and Peace
Deuteronomy 11:18-21 (NIV)