So Isaac settled in Gerar. When the men of the place asked him about his wife, he said, “She is my sister,” for he feared to say, “My wife,” thinking, “lest the men of the place should kill me because of Rebekah,” because she was attractive in appearance.” (Genesis 26:6–7, ESV)

When the men of the place asked him about his wife, he said, “She is my sister.” Some sins are simply learned at home. Whether it’s our mother or a father, or a combination of both, more things are caught than taught. All too often, parents do not realize the incredible influence they have upon their children. The reality is children pick up our bad habits faster than they pick up our good ones.

In all those years of traipsing around the Middle East, Abraham did not realize his lie concerning his wife being his sister was being talked about and heard in the ears of Isaac. In those early days of his childhood, while watching his father, Abraham – the man who followed hard after God, the man who God promised to give the land of the Canaanites – lie about his mother, left him with the understanding that when you are afraid it’s okay to lie.

This is why so many people talk about generational curses. The sins father becomes a reality in the lives of their children. Behavior is imitated from one father to son and then from that father to son for generation after generation. Our sins just become a part of the culture of our families. So the bad behavior may get modified but used for generations. Even good behaviors can be corrupted when it falls into a person of bad character in our family lines. And a new curse starts.

Thus, Isaac picked up his father Abraham’s bad habit of lying about his wife.  While Abraham’s wife was his half-sister, Rebecca was not Isaac’s. But the sin born out of doubt and fear in Abraham remained alive and well in Isaac. And this is the way it happens. Our faithlessness leads to more faithlessness in the next-generation if we do not confess it, forsake it, and constantly explain it to our children.

It is important right now to ask ourselves, “What am I doing that God disapproves of? How is it influencing my children? Do I really want this to take on a life of its own and live for generations in my family?”

The answers to these questions will demonstrate whether we are a person filled with faith or a person filled with self.

Faith Filled Fridays hope to boost your trust in God and accelerate your daring and courage in everyday life. Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Executive Director of Eagles In Leadership, writes each encouragement out of a heart that has known both great joy and great loss – his wife of 38 years, 5 months and 2 days was promoted to Heaven on November 11, 2017. Through every experience, God has proven Himself more than faithful and trustworthy. He welcomes your comments below.