God's Faithfulness to Generations
God’s faithfulness to each generation!
by Mark Stene
‘Oh Lord the God of Israel, you are just, for we are left a remnant that has escaped, as it is today.’ (Ezra 9:15)
‘God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. So too, at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.’ (Romans 11: 2, 5 & 6)
Throughout the Biblical record, I am struck by a specific and particular promise from God, to each successive generation, and given to his covenant people; those who will be called in their appointed time to salvation. Regardless of the circumstances that will face each new generation passing over the stage of providence, God promises to call out and preserve a ‘remnant’ of the faithful to carry the gospel message to the next generation.
Over a quarter century ago, perhaps a year or so before my father was called into the ‘halls of eternity,’ he drew me aside one day to pass the baton of family patriarch from himself to me, his only male heir. He was suffering from a pervasive cancer that would take his life sooner rather than later. Knowing this, he desired to give me his blessing and some sound advice. One of the statements he made to me that somber day was as follows: “Son, over my long lifetime, I have seen the fabric of this nation change dramatically. Our constitutional liberties are being stripped away. Our moral compass no longer points in the right direction. We are no longer who we once were. But son, I fear for what your generation will see if the present course continues.” Then he paused for a moment, as fathers have a want to do and continued… “Son, if you let it.” If I let it! Those words of warning and admonition have haunted me all these many years. What can one man do to reverse a down-spiraling social order?
Fast forward a quarter century - so last June, on the very day of my 63rd birthday, I found myself on a plane flying to Dallas, beginning a brand new career path following a 40 year career in the corporate world; traveling with a company of several Riverbend Academy teachers and staff members, we were journeying together to my first ACCS academic conference. A place where like-minded evangelical educators would gather, from all over the country, to attend classes, compare teaching methods, review curriculum and fellowship together under the auspices of several driving principles. 1Within the context of a Christian and Classical educational format, how do we best give glory to God by providing the best educational experience possible to this present generation of students? 2How do we secure a ‘set apart’ generation that will be brought up in a Bible-centric, Christ honoring environment? 3How shall we so educate these students, found under our charge, to equip them to go forth from the Academy as the brightest and best of their generation? 4How do we equip them to be ‘salt and light’, in each field of endeavor, into which they will be called?
The first morning of the conference found every conference attendee meeting together in a large conference room to receive instruction concerning the objectives of this annual conclave. Truthfully, I can tell you that little comes back to my mind regarding what was said by the opening speaker. What did impress me, more than mere words, was the assembly of a thousand or more Christian educators from every region of this nation. I was struck that within this every increasingly secular nation there were assembled together literally hundreds and even thousands of ‘points of light’ that God had raised up, each in their respective town, county and state. Further, that in the autumn of my mortal life, God had graciously extended to me a gift whereby I can actively participate in the education of so many young lives that providentially pass through Riverbend Academy. I was also struck by the thought that I might just be seeing God preserving the generational remnant, promised in scripture that will take the light of Christ and the hope of the Gospel forward; that even as our society becomes increasingly godless, the gates of hell shall not prevail. God’s faithfulness and promises played out with great poignancy before my minds-eye. Perhaps God’s goodness to me involves using an aged and cracked clay vessel, as just one of his infinite means, to help rise up a new remnant in this present secular age. Therefore, with my father’s words ringing in my ears, a quarter century after being spoken, I will strive to make a difference…one student at a time…just one man, joining with many, until the Lord returns or we are called home. Being faithful to God and trusting in his special promise - ‘God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. So too, at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.’ (Romans 11: 2, 5 & 6)
When my blog posting comes back into rotation, I will develop the 4 questions, one-at-a-time, that are listed within the body of this first post.
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