Today, June 18, 2017 we continued a three part series about the importance of storytelling. In Psalm 78: 1-8 God gives us a commandment to tell our children and grandchildren about the truth of God’s word so that they will be equipped to face life and to understand that they are the children of God. It is clearly our responsibility and not the responsibility of institutions to do this for each generation.
“Listen, dear friends, to God’s Truth, and pay attention to what I say. I am going to use wise sayings. I’ll let you in on the sweet old truths, stories we heard from our Fathers, counsel we learned at our mother’s knee. We’re not keeping this to ourselves, we’re passing it along to the next generation – about the Lord’s power and the marvelous things He has done. He gave laws to the people of Israel and commandments to the descendants of Jacob, then commanded our parents to teach it to their children so that the next generation might learn them and in turn should tell their children so they will never forget the works of God but keep His commandments to the letter. They will not be like their ancestors, a rebellious and disobedient people, whose trust in God was never firm and who did not remain faithful to Him.”
There are many ways that we can preserve and teach this information. It can be preserved with video (a popular medium these days) in which case a person can be seen and heard. Since it is digital the quality will not degrade over time. It can also be preserved in book (or booklet) form. It takes a little longer to write, but the stories are preserved on paper so that in 150 years the only tool needed to read it are the eyes. Keeping a journal, either in a diary or on scrap pieces of paper placed in a shoe box, is similar to preserving as a book but thoughts are recorded as they occur… at random. Audio recordings via your cell phone, or other recording device, are good but care must be taken to not lose or misplace the resulting digital files. If we don’t teach with words or other media, our actions by default teach for us… that can’t be denied.
In any case, face-to-face conversations are the most impactful and the most personal ways to teach. Even though words can evaporate as soon as they are spoken, who is to say what the best method is to carry out God’s commandment effectively? That is the job of the Holy Spirit, so always ask for His help. It may be that what we say today will have a profound effect on someone generations from now. We will never know until we get to Heaven.
Today we watched 16 short video clips of various people telling just one little piece of information that will be passed on to their families and to others who see and listen. It doesn’t take much to have a profound effect on someone whom we may not know in another time that is different from today. I would encourage you to be proactive with passing on your wisdom. It may not occur to those closest to you to ask the questions until it is too late to ask.
Here, for example, is an interesting little clip from the Lucchese family of how impactful even the smallest, everyday childhood scenarios can be as we become adults. Most of us have memories of grandparents, and some of the most powerful memories that we can have as adults is of the sights, sounds, and smells from our childhood. A granddaughter (Gina Lucchese), now herself a mother, writes a story about memories of her grandparents from when she was eight years old. It is narrated by her niece who was eight years old when this video was made.