And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

Philippians 1:6


Growing up, my family was always at church–on Sunday mornings, Sunday evenings, and Wednesday nights. I accepted Christ when I was six years old and I was baptized soon after.

My parents did all the right things to guide my spiritual formation, but as I grew from a child to a young adult, I became complacent about my friendship with Jesus and my motivation to follow Him. I was happy to float along, holding loosely onto the coattails of my parents’ faith.

By the time I made it through college, there was nothing about my life that reflected what I claimed to believe. I had no need for God; my parents, friends, education, social life, and ambition could fill all the empty spaces–or so I thought.

It wasn’t until tragedy shattered my relatively pain-free existence that my heart began to change. My dad passed away suddenly, just a few months after I graduated from college. Dad was such an anchoring force in my life, I didn’t even know who I was without him. I was in a tailspin.

That’s when I surrendered and turned toward Jesus, the one who my parents had been pointing me to all my life. That foundation of faith they had built when I was young didn’t crumble; it was the very thing that held me in place while all the other stuff collapsed around me.

Now, I am a parent of three kiddos who spend lots of time at church. I worry sometimes whether they are like me, hanging onto the coattails of their parents’ faith. I wonder if they will drift away before Jesus becomes real to them. Then, I remember that it’s not up to me. God is their father. He begins the good work within them and continues until the work is done.

If you have people in your life who haven’t made Jesus their own, I would encourage you to pray Philippians 1:6 for them and continue to point them toward Him like my parents did for me.

Jill Poe-Thompson

Crossings KIDS Elementary Pastor – Crossings OKC

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