Generations come and generations go. And there’s a time to be a child and have things done for us and a time we must step up and be the generation in charge – learning from those who have gone before us while also embracing our time to take up the mantle.
As Elijah was taken up to heaven in a whirlwind he left his mantle behind. And Elisha picked it up and assumed his role as a prophet for God’s people.
As children, we only had to listen, learn, and grow as the adults in our life rightly took on the primary responsibility for making life work.
And even at work, we start off in the lowly position of watching and learning from those who have seniority. While we might have some responsibility for our particular tasks, this is not yet our kingdom, and the buck ultimately stops with someone else.
But in time the older generation passes away and a new one must take its place as the circle of life continues.
Like Elisha, this might not be a time we’re rushing to get to. As much as we might be ready to fully exercise the strength God has given us, there’s still much comfort in knowing there are those older and wiser we can lean on for support. And perhaps this is why part of us still feels orphaned regardless of how old we are when our parents die – we’ve lost an anchor that’s been there our entire life.
But our time to take up the mantle comes all the same.
And while we follow in the footsteps of those who have come before us, there’s a sense in which we must still find our own way. And this is daunting, scary, and a bit lonely without the mentors we once relied on. But we take up the mantle in faith – remembering this is ultimately God’s work to continue and he will provide us with all we need.
It’s a huge responsibility to take up the mantle and continue the work of faith started by others. But God has prepared you for such a time as this. Be bold in completing the work he has given you to do.