All of our five children are now in college or working. We have taught them many lessons for life but what will be remembered? Before they left our nest, there were 4 things that Susan and I taught them and always want them to remember. Here they are:
1. Remember who you are—your identity
So many people spend much of their lives trying to determine their identity. They constantly struggle and attempt to create and recreate their identity by how they act, how they look, what they wear, what they drive, where they live, and what they’ve got because they don’t have any idea who they are and how valuable they are. You don’t have to do that because God has given you your identity and value. You were created and chosen by God. You are wonderfully made.
In my younger years, it was really important to me to get the approval of other people. For example, when I spoke publicly, I was always thinking things like, “Do they like what I’m saying? Do they like the way I’m saying it? What do they think about me?” I was focused on me and was seeking the approval of others. Once I learned to take the focus off me, fear of what other people thought and fear of making mistakes was replaced with freedom to be the person God created me to be. God does not want us to seek the approval, accolades, and applause of others. He desires for us to look only to the audience of one person for everything, God Almighty…and to do everything to please, glorify, and honor Him alone. Your purpose in life is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
3. Remember how you should live—your life
God tells us that the most important thing we can do is to love Him and love others. Jesus also says, “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15). One of His commands is to read and meditate on His Word. My favorite passage in the Bible is from Psalm 1:1-3 which says, “Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers, but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.” What an encouraging thing! If my delight is in God and His Word, and if I read and meditate on it, God will have His hand of favor on my life in ways I never even dreamed of!
As you continue on your life journey, you will be making more and more decisions that will profoundly influence and impact you for the rest of your life here on earth. The Bible will provide the wisdom you need to make decisions that honor God.
4. Remember what God has promised you—your reward
I can’t wait to get to Heaven! As I grow older, I think more about it and look forward to the joy we will experience in the presence of God. God loves you and He has plans to prosper you, to give you hope and a future. God has plans to bless you and richly reward you for what you have done and what you will do for his glory here on earth.