Family Heritage

“REED” This


Family Heritage


Many of you know, and I guess many of you may not know, I am the youngest child in my family. I have three older sisters and one older brother. Celia is the oldest followed by Becky, who is five years younger. Ruthie was born two years after Becky, followed by John, who was born another two years later, and then I was born two years after him. So, my oldest sister, Celia, is eleven years older than me. I truly enjoyed growing up with so many siblings. We had 15 first cousins on our mother’s side of the family. She was the oldest of four girls born to my grandparents. So, I’m one of 20 grandchildren on the McClure side. On my father’s side, we had nine first cousins between his older brother and younger brother, making me one of 14 grandchildren on the Reed side. Dad had three half-brothers and one half-sister that I remember, but I don’t remember their children as we didn’t see them much. We saw our first cousins quite a lot as they all lived in Oklahoma, except for one of my mother’s sisters and her family living in the Dallas, Texas area and our family living in Arkansas just six miles from the Oklahoma state line. It was only a three-hour drive to Madill, Oklahoma where both sets of my grandparents lived, which was in the south-central part of the state just above Lake Texoma on the Oklahoma and Texas border. Whenever we went to visit one side, we always were able to visit the other side. They were even members of the same church, which, incidentally, was the first place my mother saw my father, therefore we all worshiped together when we were there on a Sunday. The family names were Reed, McClure, Ard, Jacks, Williams, and my great aunt and her son’s family name, Broderick. All these names, which included 51 people, were raised in the church, and were taught to know and love Jesus. That’s three generations of my family. The first of those generations were taught by the previous generations. That teaching carried on into the other two and has been and is being passed down into two more generations.


As my uncle, Darrell Ard, has done a lot of research into our ancestry and I have done a little, I find it interesting that I was the first ordained minister in our family tree. That means that all this strong Christian heritage has been passed down through many generations not by preachers, but simply by lay-people that love Jesus and shared Him with their children. That so encourages me! What an awesome blessing from God! I know that not everyone can say all of this about their family. Someone else may not be able to say any of their ancestors knew the Lord, and that is sad and may be very difficult for that person. But that person can be the first generation that is a believer in Jesus and starts what an ancestor many generations later can say, “That’s when our family began following Jesus.” That’s why I’m writing this. Not to brag about me, but to acknowledge how the Lord has blessed me and to encourage all of us to keep sharing Jesus with our families, and to all the people we can so that their family trees will be full of believers. We have the awesome opportunity and responsibility to share Jesus with our children, our siblings, cousins, and maybe even our aunts and uncles and grandparents. Long ago, God instructed the Israelites to tell their children and generations after them of Him and His ways. That still applies to us today.


“The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”  Deuteronomy 6:4-7  CSB


I love my family, and I am grateful I can continue to love them as we spend eternity together in heaven. I pray you can say the same about yours. Whether anyone listens or accepts, in love we must continue sharing Jesus. Prayerfully, our family heritage will all be eternal life with Him.


Bro. Paul Reed


Tuesday, July 27, 2021