This past weekend my dad, who is 84 years old, suffered a heart attack. His brush with death made me realize that I knew little about my spiritual genealogy. Once dad is gone there is information about my spiritual ancestry that will be gone forever and so sitting next to his hospital bed I asked him about the people who had a spiritual influence on his life. That night I started to become acquainted with my spiritual ancestors who have made me who I am today.
As I was driving home from the hospital it struck me that neither one of my parents had ever recounted for me their spiritual genealogy-but then I had never thought to ask them about my spiritual ascendants! Sure I had caught bits and pieces along the way but there was never an intentional conversation to introduce me to those who had spiritually gone before me. Can I really know my parents and myself without knowing their spiritual ancestors?
My thoughts then turned to Taylor Gardner who discipled me 35 years ago. He has had a large impact on my life and yet I know little of Taylor’s spiritual ancestry. Why was there not a curiosity on my part of his spiritual genealogy to which I am indelibly connected? It is not for a lack of access that I do not know my ancestry because both of my parents and Taylor are still living. I just have not asked.
I admit that I have not shared with my disciples my spiritual genealogy because (1) I have known little about my ancestors and (2) up until this point I did not see its value.
- I am in the process of interviewing my parents, and soon Taylor, in order to get to know my spiritual ancestors.
- I have started to share with my disciples my spiritual genealogy and I am asking them to investigate their own spiritual ancestry.