By: Pastor Jarren Rogers
One of the essential projects in elementary school is creating your family tree.
I actually remember putting mine together. First, I needed my parents help to track down pictures of all of my extended family. Next, I pasted each picture to a piece of poster board and began to make a tree.
I was at the very bottom in the center, my brother and sister’s pictures next to mine. Sprouting up from us were small photos of my parents. Then things got complicated. Grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, all sloppily glued about poster board. I ran out of the room and on one side my cousins hugged the edge in a vertical line.
The project caused us to step back and take a look at our heritage. To see the vast amount of people whose lives and decisions had an impact on us. To get us to think: if it weren’t for my great-great-grandparents getting together, I would have never existed!
Ancestry fascinates us. There are dozens of websites dedicated to it. My grandmother has a whole book that’s filled with the background of my mom’s side of the family. It’s so interesting to know how we got to be where we are and who brought us here.
But I think there’s another ancestry that we’ve yet to see. One that we may never see on this side of heaven. Our spiritual ancestry.
Can you imagine what it would look like to see your spiritual family tree? You are at the bottom and connected to you is the person who told you about Christ. And beside you are all the people who were also led to Christ by that same person. And you could keep going. Moving up is the person who converted the person who told you about Christ. And how many people did they share it with?
I like to believe that part of our eternal reward will be to see just how many people we’ve impacted on this side of heaven. I think God will somehow make it visible to us. Heaven will be one big spiritual family tree. At the top is Christ and below Him, the twelve disciples, and the tree flows down and expands and grows.
And somewhere in the midst of that tree is you.
We will see all the people who we’ve led to Christ and then we’ll see the people who they led to Christ and on and on and on.
You have control over how many branches will extend from your ministry. How many people can be impacted because of one conversation that reverberated through generations? One act, one urging from the Holy Spirit could affect enough people to fill a football stadium.
It all started before you. And it all starts with you.