December 5, 2016

The Web

The responsibility of transmitting our values belongs to all of us.

Gerald A. Klingbeil

During an early-morning walk, in the semidarkness of a new day following a long period of rain, I saw something beautiful. An industrious spider had built an impressive web, connecting a streetlight to the branch of a big tree. I had walked by the streetlight nearly every day for the past seven years—yet only the thousands of little water droplets of the early-morning mist, put in the right lighting, helped me see the spiderweb for the first time.

We often live rather isolated in our communities. We function reasonably well; we work hard to make ends meet; and on Sabbaths we meet and worship our Creator God. Too often, however, we don’t recognize the web of interconnectedness that really shapes who we are, what we believe, and how we go about living productive lives. This web helps us find our way in tough times; it holds us when we stumble; it keeps us focused when we lose our vision; it surrounds us with people who care.

As we think about transmitting faith to the next generation, the spider’s web is a great metaphor to recognize the interconnectedness of all who share the desire of every parent’s heart. Parents, grandparents, the larger family, teachers and school administrators, pastors, Sabbath School teachers, and church members—they all play a vital role.

In the following pages we share important concepts, engaging stories, and creative ideas that should help us rediscover the important web of partnerships all working together to communicate faith to a new generation. The good news: we are not alone in this. God’s interest in our children, teenagers, and young adults cannot be topped by anything. His care knows no distraction; His love is unwavering; His persistence has no limits. That’s good news for those who can’t wait to finally get home.

Gerald A. Klingbeil is an associate editor of Adventist Review.