Recently Dallas and Celeste binged Netflix’s Original: Ultraman which is a continuation of the original 1960’s series. If you’re unfamiliar with Ultraman; the Netflix description reads as;
“Decades ago, a hero from the stars left this world in peace. Now, the son of Ultraman [Shinjiro Hayata] must rise to protect the Earth from a new alien threat.”
This series caught Dallas’ attention because of the concept of the son picking up the mantle of his father. Growing up, Shinjiro didn’t know his father used to be Ultraman, but he knew there was something that made him different. Years later Shinjiro discovered the truth and had to make a decision. “Am I going to take on this identity given to me by my father; or not?”
Similarly, we’ve all been given things from our parents. Some of it is good, some of it is not good at all. At the same time, parents, like it or not you’re passing down things to your children. Some of it is good and impactful, some of it is not good but just as impactful. So the question becomes; what is it that we are supposed to be passing down?
If you’re like us and you are coming from a Christian World View, you should pass down your faith. You need to tell your children the tales of how God miraculously moved in your life. Talk about how He was there for you when you needed Him the most and how you faithfully served Him. You need to present the Gospel in a real and passionate way, and then the hard part happens…
You have to allow your kids to decide what they will do with it.
You can’t save your kids. You can’t pull to the side and say “Look junior, you’re a Christian.” Christianity is not passed down by birthright; it’s something each has to take it and own it themselves.
We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders that he has done.
In this singular verse, God is commanding His people to pass down the stories of what God has done. If you read the passage in full context we discover that God tells His people not to just pass on the good stories, but the bad stories too. Often parents want to hide their failures and mistakes from their kids. But those are stories that they need to hear too. They need to know that God is so faithful that if they fail, He can restore. They need to know that when we are at weakest moments, God is strong. We need to pass all these stories down to the next generation.
This now brings us to the responsibility of the next generation. The stories that your parents have told you about what God has done in their lives. Please take time to listen and meditate on them. Take in the stories and then personally make a decision. Like Shinjiro, you have to make a decision. Will you own this faith they’ve presented to you? Or will you walk away from it?
At the same time, parents and the older generation, when you pass things off to the next generation; really give it to them. Let your ceiling be your floor. One of the best parts of this series is that Shinjiro has already surpassed his father. One of the saddest parts was in episode 4 of the series Shinjiro’s father tells him that he’s proud of him, and that was the first time Shinjiro had ever heard that. Parents, don’t let your children grow up without hearing that you are proud of them.
If one generation passes on their faith to the next, cheer them on even if they look different than them, then we will see the world changed. We will see revival.