A Plea for Your Family

Do you have a will?
Have you considered long-term impacts from avoiding important decisions?

Every couple of years, I walk through tragic circumstances with families who put off important decisions that would have far-reaching consequences.  My own extended family faced terrible pain because those decisions weren’t made when they would have made a life-altering difference.  So let me share some of the responses I have received when I have asked these two questions:

  • I have plenty of time.
  • I don’t have anything that’s all that valuable.
  • I don’t care because I won’t be around anyway.

I once thought that way.  And then I sat on a board for an agency that was aimed at protecting children.  If you have children and you have not designated a guardian in a proper will, then you have abandoned your children to the state’s choice.  Someone you don’t know, with a power you never intended, will exercise a value system that you won’t hold, to place the children you love wherever THEY deem appropriate.  The only time you have a say in that matter is in the language of a will.  

Twice, we spent a little bit of time and thought on wills and guardianship because we didn’t want to leave our kids to chance.  We approached dear friends whom we trusted and asked them to prayerfully consider serving as guardians in case of tragedy.  And every time I had to conduct a funeral that was unexpected and shocking, I was thankful that someone had advised me to protect my kids.  That parental security cost a little time and surprisingly little money.

Have you taken care of this for your family?  Have you asked your adult kids if THEY have taken care of issues like this?  Have you asked your aging parents if they have taken care of issues like this?

In my own experience as a pastor, I have asked these questions repeatedly, and the most common answer I have heard is this:  “Not yet. . .”

So let me ask it a different way:  Have you protected your children yet?  Have you protected your spouse yet?  If your answer is “not yet,” then friends, it is time.  It’s too important to neglect.

I know. . .I have watched the tragic effects of that neglect, all of which could have been avoided.  We have 6 weeks until prime travel time.  Get it done!