Monday, August 9, 2010

How bout them Cowboys!

Emitt Smith is my new favorite sports figure! If you caught his 24 minute speech at the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction you know what I mean. I have always been a fan of Mr. Smith. Especially as a player. I can remember watching him run through the NY Giants with only one working shoulder. I can remember watching him break the all time rushing record when he surpassed Walter Payton (whom I also loved). I especially remember watching Mr. Smith along with all the other Dallas Cowboys win three Super Bowls. Those where good days for Cowboy fans.

Saturday night however, when I saw Mr. Smith give his speech I was more than impressed. Not because he spoke for 24 minutes without any notes or teleprompter. Not because he spoke so eloquently. But because on the surface it appears he cares about leaving a legacy. Toward the end of his speech he told of how he felt when he got the call that he was going into the Hall of Fame. He spoke about how he told his father and his son that he would not be going into the Hall of Fame alone, but that he would be carrying all of them with him because they all have the same name, "Emitt". He told them that they would forever be apart of the history and greatness of Football.

For a guy who cares about leaving a legacy, this was right up my alley. I love it when a guy realizes that what he can do now will affect what people will remember of him when he is gone. In essence this is the story of the gospel.

Jesus did something that causes us to remember him even though He is no longer physically here with us. He made a choice to give His life so that you and I might find forgiveness, love, grace, and mercy. His choice to die for the sin of mankind is a legacy that lives on today. He still forgives sin and He still offers love, grace and mercy. This is the kind of legacy that can change a life and a family.

Dad, we must remember that we do not walk in this world alone but we have precious gifts given to us by God who carry our name. They are looking to see what kind of legacy we are going to leave them. They are watching to see what they have to live up to. They are in desperate need of someone showing them right from wrong. They are watching to see how you love a family. They are waiting to see who will show them forgiveness, love, grace and mercy. These are the kind of things that will determine our legacy. These are the kind of things that will change our families. We must not be afraid to change our family tree so that we are leaving the right kind of legacy.

E.J. Smith may not remember every run or every touchdown his father made. He may not remember the heroics he showed on the football field. But you can bet E.J. Smith will remember that his daddy stood on the world's stage and told everyone that was listening how much he loves his family. He will remember his daddy humbling crying as he thanked those that had helped him along the way. He will remember that his daddy is Emitt Smith and that is all that matters.

Thank you Mr. Smith for changing your family tree.

Don't be afraid to change your family tree.

Paul Kersh
Family Tree Ministries

Monday, August 2, 2010

Adoption! WOW!

This weekend my wife and I had a great Sunday afternoon with some relatively new friends, but they quickly have become really good friends. We spent the afternoon at a baseball game. We watched our kids, who are close to the same age, play together. We talked more than we watched the game. We drank lots of water since it was 103 outside. It was a great day! We have a lot of things in common with this family so we therefore have many natural connections. Thy have a young daughter, we have a young daughter. They have a young son, we have a young son. They are in the process of adopting a baby girl. We have adopted a baby girl. So you can imagine what much of our conversation was about. Adoption!

All the talk about adoption only fueled my fire for how much God loves you and me! You know adoption is a great thing. God commands us to take care of the orphans. But, adoption is hard! The whole process is unnatural. Adoption was certainly not the best most perfect way. It was not what God had intended. Because it is a result of a fallen world! However, adoption is the best way we have to see God's true love in action. There are children all over our world who need a family. They need someone to love them and care for them as if they were their own. They need someone to look beyond their situation and see that they still need love and acceptance. And there are families who need these children. There are families all over this world who are longing to share their home and love with one who needs it. These families don't care about the situation, they simply want to love the precious gifts that God has created.

More than two thousand years ago God saw fit to send One who would love us beyond our situation. God paid the price for us because He knew we could not do it for ourselves. He knew we needed someone to love us and care for us and offer us a home. We were adopted by the King. Given all the rights and benefits of the King. We became apart of His family. We have been adopted into a family by the grace and love of our Heavenly Father.

Talk about changing your family tree! What an amazing thought! Once we were lost but now we are found. Once we were blind but now we see! We were so far away from God with no hope of ever being able to reach Him. But Jesus came down giving up Heaven to live as a man, perfect and sinless, so that He might die a sinless death and pay our penalty for our sin. Therefore making a way for us to reach Him when He called our name. The Lord Jesus Christ changed the family tree for all those that obediently responded to His calling. Adoption is truly an amazing thing.

Mom and dad, if you want to change your family tree share with your children your adoption story. Adoption is a part of all our lives. Everyone of us that have placed our lives in the hands of Jesus have adoption as a part of our lives. So why would we not share it. Remember, you were lost then you were found. Who were you found by? Why did He find you? What is your role now as a member of this special family? All these question will plant a seed so that when God the Father calls the name of your children they will be ready to answer.

Until God calls their name, pray! Pray like you never have! Pray that God will use you to show what it means to be a adopted son or daughter of the King. Pray that God will use you to change your family tree so that one day your entire family will be praising our Lord together in His Heaven. Don't forget that adoption is a part of all our stories, and we have a responsibility to share it and embrace it so that our families can be changed forever.

Don't be afraid to change your family tree!

To our friends, we love you and are praying for you as you follow God's call for your family. What a wonderful thing that God is doing in your family. How cool that He is giving you an opportunity to change the family tree of this new little one as well as your own. Embrace every chance that God gives you to praise Him and glorify Him. That is our chief end, to glorify Him forever. Now you will get to do it with this new precious gift. God bless you and your family.

Paul Kersh
Family Tree Ministries