I recently went to visit my extended family and was able to spend some time with my elderly grandparents who were recently moved into an assisted-living home. They are none too happy about having to be there, but their failing minds and bodies have necessitated the move from their own home to a place where they can get some extra help at this stage of their lives. At the ages of 85 and 92 they were still living completely on their own but they were beginning to have more and more difficulty doing so.
My grandparents grew up and lived the early part of their adult years in Minerva, Ohio. My grandfather was called into the ministry as a young adult and so he packed up his wife and two young sons and went to Bible College. They served in a few different churches during his ministry, but the one I especially remember was in a small southern Ohio community where they ministered during the time I was growing up. I remember visiting grandma and grandpa and going to church and hearing my grandpa preach the Word.
After getting my grandparents all settled into the assisted-living home, my mom and dad and my aunts and uncles have been diligently going through all the items in my grandparent’s house. They went into the attic and found many old papers and memoirs. One of the things they found was an old black leather binder full of my grandpa’s sermons. Some were actually hand written. On the back of each sermon was written the date and place where my grandpa had preached it. Being a third generation pastor, I was especially interested in having this binder of sermons as a keepsake. My aunt and uncle wanted me to have the binder, so they gave it to me. It is precious to me and something I will treasure forever.
As I reflect on this little black binder I am reminded of the importance of leaving a legacy. My grandparents won’t be here on earth much longer, but the legacy they leave will impact generations. I intend to carry on that legacy so that generations in my family line will proclaim the Lord’s faithfulness. I will sing of the Lord’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. Psalm 89:1