I work full-time as a video producer at a college university. One of my most recent projects was a video highlighting first generation college students; students who were the first of their family to ever pursue a college degree. These students decided to break out of the generational cycle set by their parents, grandparents and beyond to be the first of their line to continue their education at a college level. This isn’t to say that obtaining a college degree makes anyone any better than anyone else. But I bring it up to highlight the truth that it is possible to break generational patterns set by our parents - college being one example. If you’ve read the succession of Israelite kings highlighted in the Old Testament, you might’ve notice a pattern passed down through the generations that really should’ve been broken. It says in second Kings chapter 21, verse 20:
“He did evil in the eyes of the Lord, as his father Manasseh had done.”
The “he” that is mentioned here is in reference to Amon, a young king who followed in his father’s footsteps, continuing the pattern of disobedience that his father had modeled. I can only imagine how difficult it is to break with tradition, or vier from taught behavior, and blaze a new path in life. But many have done it. I want to encourage you, if your parents have never followed Christ, that doesn’t mean you have to follow their path. Today would be the perfect time to blaze your own trail. Second Kings records king Amon following the same destructive path his father had led. If the example your parents set before you doesn’t lead to Christ, I would implore you to choose the path that does.
King Amon chose to follow the destructive path his father had walked. But if we read on we learn that though Amon and his father had done evil in the eyes of the Lord, Amon’s son, Josiah, chose to break the pattern. The Bible says that he “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and walked in all the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left”. Within the line of Israelite kings, most chose to do evil in the sight of God. But there were a few, those like David and Josiah, who broke with tradition and blazed their own path, following God and obeying his commands. If your parents are not following Christ, that doesn’t mean you have to follow their lead. You can blaze a new path; a fruitful path; one you can pass down to your children and grandchildren.