Updated: Mar 16, 2020
Last Thursday evening, I received a call from my mom and I could tell that something was wrong when she called. She was calling to let me know that my Uncle Ron (her brother) had passed away after a battle with Parkinson's Disease. My uncle lived the past 40 years in Orlando, Florida and spent most of that time working for Walt Disney World. While growing up, my brother and I didn't get to spend a whole lot of time with him, but we knew that when we went to visit him, that we would be going to Disney World. Being a Disney employee allowed him to give tickets into the park to his family. As Amy and I had our children we were able to enjoy this benefit as well. Uncle Ron's legacy for us includes many positive things and one of those is that he is the uncle that worked for Disney. I doubt any of you knew my uncle, but if you visited Disney you would also be witness to his legacy. You see, he was an engineer at Disney World and helped build and maintain many of the attractions that we are all familiar with in the theme park. So his legacy will live on for many years to come.
On Sunday, Dr. Wheeler challenged us to build a legacy. This legacy has to do with reaching the lost and doing the work of the Kingdom. I love this passage out of Joshua 4:4-7, "So Joshua called together the twelve men he had appointed from the Israelites, one from each tribe, 5 and said to them, "Go over before the ark of the Lord your God into the middle of the Jordan. Each of you is to take up a stone on his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the Israelites, 6 to serve as a sign among you. In the future, when your children ask you, 'What do these stones mean?' 7 tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever." There is so much here that encourages us to build a legacy and to be reminded of the goodness of God.
To begin, Joshua commanded the people to take the rocks form the middle of the Jordan River. He didn't say take them from the side closest to Egypt or the side of the promised land. He commanded this to be done from the middle of the river. To me, the river represents the transition period from the time God provided for the Israelites as they wondered in the wilderness, to the time they would spend in Canaan. This was their transition, just as we as a church are in transition. Notice also that God held back the waters as they crossed. If God had released the waters millions would have lost their lives. We too need God to hold back the waters during this time of transition for us. We have to pray that He keeps us united, that He protects our church, and that we surrender to His leadership as we cross into our future. The final point, is that Joshua told the people that one day their children would ask about this memorial created from the rocks they collected. He encouraged them to remind the future generations of the goodness and provision of God. He wanted the people to see that their legacy was to share that even in the midst of the transition, God was with them. I want us to do that as well - to be able to share with future generations that God was here as we transitioned from Pastor Carl to our new leader.
What is your legacy? I am excited to join with you in continuing to create a legacy here at Hyland Heights during the transition time and into our future. Have a great week!
Serving His Kids with a Passion,