Please help me welcome Linda S., as she talks about her experiences with parenting and faith:
Passing it ON!!
As a homeschooling mom of 3 I found myself always looking for different ways to make what I was teaching stick, and in the process felt strongly that we needed to pass on our Godly heritage so that our kids would know of God’s faithfulness to our family. I didn’t have a lot of extra time but felt that this was important, so I chose things to do that I could do on a gradual basis and piece together. Here are a few of the things that we have done over the years to “pass it on” to our kids.
-Because God had led us to homeschooling we wanted them to know why we made that decision so each of our now grown kids, received an album which includes our family history, testimonies of our life and Christian experience, why we homeschooled and the ups and downs of that. Kind of like a diary of our child raising years.
-I also have what I call a legacy box for each of our kids. In that box I’ve put notes and letters and little items that I’ve collected over the years to remind them of things.
-Recently we found some items when cleaning out a cedar chest and were given some items that belonged to our ancestors. Some of the items included a baby blanket, a flag that flew over a great grandparents home while their sons fought in WW2, a sailor uniform, a headpiece from a great grandmothers wedding veil, a crocheted doily, tatting from a great-grandmother with the shuttle that she used, and a blouse from a great great grandmother.
We wanted each of the kids to have these items as part of their legacy but since I only had one of each item I had to figure out how to give them each a piece. The only solution I could think of was to cut those items. YIKES! That was actually the hardest part of this whole thing. As I thought it through there were two choices. I could either leave them as they were, stuffed in my cedar chest where no one ever saw them, or I could cut them. Unless I was going to donate them to some historical museum they weren’t doing anything but collecting moths. I’m sure by now you’ve figured what my choice was. Once the first snip took place the rest were easy. So this is what I did: one of my sons received one of the 2nd sailor tops; the other son, the flag because he was named after that grandfather; and then our daughter received the vintage blouse. All these items were put in a display box for each of them.
I then took the other items and began the process of cutting the pieces and arranging them in display boxes. Each display box had a nice space in them to add items at a later time if more items were found. I used double-sided tape to secure the items in the box so when it was hung on a wall the items wouldn’t fall down.
Each box included; a corner from the baby blanket, a piece from the navy uniform which included the stripes and buttons, a small doily and crochet hook used by a grandmother, the tatting and shuttle, a red cord, 3 small stones – HOPE, FAITH, LOVE, A title piece from an old hymnal which I selected, appropriate for their life, and a Circle of Family which a great-aunt had sent on a thank you card many years ago. Our only daughter received a couple of other things including; the beaded wedding headband, a pure silk handkerchief from a great great-aunt, and a “mother’ pin from a great great-grandmother.
So now that I’ve arranged and secured all of the items in the box, I didn’t want to just give them a box but wanted to tie in to our Christian beliefs. Below is what was read to each of them and then printed and secured in the back each box. I removed the personal names for this article that were included in our kids boxes.
Items included in our gift to you.
A piece of Dad’s baby blanket–Just as his mother wrapped your dad in the blanket to cover him, GOD our Heavenly Father covered our sins by the blood of HIS only SON Jesus, who chose to die on the cross to cover our sins. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you WILL be saved. Whoever will confess HIM before men, him will I also confess before my Father which is in heaven.
A corner from Grandpa’s Navy uniform. Just as a soldier puts on his uniform to prepare for battle, so we need to put on the whole armor of GOD so that we can stand against the attacks of the devil….which are many.
A set of tatted pillowcase edges, my grandma, made these on a visit to my family when we lived in Arizona. Just as my grandma lovingly tatted each of these sets, GOD is making us into what HE wants us to be….
Crocheted doily–grandma, made this. Just as grandma made each stitch intentionally, so God is intentionally guiding our path and if is we seek Him on this path of life, He will guide us in a way that is best for us. Just like grandma could see a picture of what the doily would look like finished, GOD sees what we cannot.
Red cord is from moms ribbon box and represents a home of faith and obedience (Josh 2:1, 6:17, 22). Rahab was able to save her whole household because she obeyed GOD.
The Circle of Family– is from your dad’s Aunt. Remember to keep God at the center of each of your lives, and then as the center of your families. Remember there is NO eternal value in family, Unless we can spend eternity together…..
Stones from our Joshua Basket – The rocks signify our desire to have a home of wisdom, truth, and God’s favor (love). We get our wisdom, truth and love all from GOD. We also gain wisdom by listening to those who have walked with God for a time and God uses our life experiences to teach us.
Jesus Paid It All (piece from hymn)– that is a fact, Jesus paid it all. What will we do with that fact? God wants us teach our children (Deut 6). Teach them when you sit, when you stand, when your walking. In other words, God wants us to be using every circumstance, and opportunity to teach our children about God. There is a world that needs a Savior and we are the ones that are to be the light, first to our families, then to our friends, then to the world.
So that’s it….Even with grown children we are looking for ways to pass on our heritage to our children. Knowing that many of the words we try to teach our kids sometimes get lost in the busyness of life, we wanted what was important to us to be passed onto the next generation.
I hope you will be encouraged to find ways to “pass it on” to your children.
Linda is a homeschooling mom of over 21 years. She and her husband, Paul, are now beginning to enjoy grandchildren. It is their greatest joy to watch their children grow in the Lord.