Unpack the Family Album!

By September 21, 2017Uncategorized

How many family albums do you have? These treasures are lovingly packed with photos, stories, and memories. We long to create a lasting remembrance for reflection, but inevitably, those books get looked at less and less. Eventually, they are packed away for another day long down the road. Usually, it’s only a major life event that pulls them out of storage and gets us talking.

Recently, my nine-year old twins found one of these buried albums. This particular one packed full of their great-grandpa’s accomplishments in the fire department. They asked question after question as they read through and took in every remembrance. Then in a stunned voice, one of them put me in my place: “Mom, you never told us great-grandpa was FAMOUS!”

I witnessed much of grandpa’s story with me own eyes. The things I didn’t see were passed on to me by my dad. He shared all the stories so that I would know who my grandpa was and the mark he had made on the world.  I realized that I hadn’t passed those stories on very well.

The people I cross paths with day-to-day will be just fine if they never know what my grandpa is famous for! They will not be fine, however, if they never know what my Heavenly Father has accomplished.

As followers of Christ, we have seen God’s majesty displayed with our own eyes. We have experienced the power of God’s mighty hand in our lives. We have witnessed declarations of the glory of God. The sun rose this morning! The trees bore fruit! And, as my littlest ones say “the animals’ fur knows when to shed and when to grow!” How amazing is that?

Have we packed away the stories of God’s marvelous works? Life is busy. So busy, in fact, that we often overlook the ways we see God. If we don’t pause take them in, how can we share Him with others?

I love beautifully the Old and New Testaments parallel to answer the “why” of our calling to disciple others:

“Remember today that your children were not the ones who saw and experienced the discipline of the Lord your God: his majesty, his mighty hand, his outstretched arm; 7But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the Lord has done.” Deuteronomy 11:2,7

“But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?” Romans 10:14 (NLT)

Friends, we need to unpack the family album for good. Some have not yet seen how marvelously God works. How can they unless we show them?

There is no better place to begin than in your home.

Our family uses a wonderful journal app on our phones – one that allows the addition of a photo on the page. We each look to find three things throughout every week:

  • See God’s Majesty
  • See God’s Power
  • See God’s Hand

On the weekend, around the campfire or over ice cream,  we share with each other. Our oldest kids have phones, so they use the app to post their own photos and notes. We all work together to help our littlest ones by taking their photos for them and writing a note on our journals. That way they still get the opportunity to share their own God stories! This helps us to learn how to carry our “family album”, or stories of God, with us at all times.

When our conversation about God becomes casual inside our homes, it will spill outside our homes — into our schools, workplaces and communities. Be prepared to share how great our God is with those we meet by keeping the family album out on the table!

About Shelley Henning

Shelley serves as Community Support Specialist for INCM. She brings a heart to serve and equip the kidmin community, working through the initiatives of Kidmin.com, Dispatch, and Children’s Ministry Certification. Shelley discovered her passion for children’s ministry in her teens and was called to full-time ministry shortly after. Prior to joining INCM, she lead thriving ministries to children and families in both large and small churches in Michigan for nearly two decades. Shelley and her husband Mike have four children that they adore walking through life with!

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