Passing On The Baton

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Genesis 17:7 – I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. (NIV)

"That was a good service." I heard these words several times as I made my way through the crowded foyer and out to my car. "A good service" — I pondered these words as my husband and I drove home for lunch. What made it a good service? Isn't every service supposed to be special? After all, we were in the presence of Almighty God. But as I thought on the events that had taken place during the service, I had to agree; it was one that I wouldn't forget in awhile.

The morning started out ordinarily enough: prayer, Scripture, and praises, nothing that wasn't being done in several other churches in our town every Sunday morning. But what happened at the end of the service made an impression on the minds of those who attended.

Our pastor's message had been on how the church is to meet the needs of all generations. At the conclusion of the sermon, he invited all those who were sixty or over up to the front of the church. About seventy grey and balding men and women made their way to the front, and the pastor prayed for them, thanking God for their leadership and contributions to their families and to the church. Then he called all the young people, twenty-one and under, to the front of the church, and about one hundred teens and older children went forward. (The younger children and babies were in another part of the building.) After prayer with this group for God to guide their future, he passed a baton to the tall silver haired-gentleman at the altar and asked him to take it and give it to his granddaughter, a lovely sixteen-year-old girl standing with the youth.

The symbolism of this act, passing the baton, served to remind us, both that day and now, of how important it is to pass on our faith to the next generation.

Prayer: Dear God, help us all to live our lives as worthy examples and teachers of Your covenant with us, so that we may pass our faith to the next generations in our homes and in our churches. Amen.

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Elaine Ingalls Hogg <>
Smiths Creek, New Brunswick, Canada

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