Failure is not an option (continued from Children & the Church)

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Failure is not an option

I recently visited the Smithsonian Institutes Air and Space Museum near Dulles Airport in Virginia.  While browsing through the gift shop I got a kick out of an interesting shirt being sold.  It had the following phrase emblazoned across the front, “Failure is NOT an option.”  Next to that was written, “Apollo XIII Lunar Mission.”   A truer thing has never been said.  If they had failed it would have meant an awful death for the astronauts onboard and a great national tragedy.

That shirt got me thinking. What if we fail?  What if the “best we can” isn’t good enough?  What if we don’t invest appropriately in teaching our children and reaching the children around us with the gospel?  The good news is we don’t have to theorize or guess about the repercussions of failure because it has happened before.  Joshua, the great and faithful military leader of GOD’s people Israel, who led them into the Promised Land and defeated their enemies, failed in one very critical area as a leader.  The tragedy unfolds in the book of Judges.

“After that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors, another generation grew up who knew neither the LORD nor what he had done for Israel. Then the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD and served the Baals. They forsook the LORD, the GOD of their ancestors, who had brought them out of Egypt. They followed and worshiped various GODs of the peoples around them. They aroused the LORD’s anger” Judges 2:10 -12

            The consequences of failing to adequately teach the children is that they will “not know the Lord” and because of that lack of knowledge they will fall into the hands of this world system, turning their backs on the living GOD.  The outcome for their families and communities is predictable.  All of the time, talent and treasure we have invested in so many other important ministries directed toward adult people will be lost as the last member of that generation joins their ancestors. Is that the spiritual legacy we want to leave?  Who will disciple the children, the people of GOD or the world?

Failure is not an option.  The stakes are far too high.

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