It may seem surprising when children don’t follow their parents’ example of faith in God. Equally unexpected is a person with a deep commitment to Christ who emerges from a family where faith was not present. In every generation, each person has a choice.

Samuel was a great man of God who appointed his two sons, Joel and Abijah, as leaders over Israel (1 Sam. 8:1-2). Unlike their father, however, they were corrupt and “turned aside after dishonest gain, took bribes, and perverted justice” (v.3). Yet, years later, we find Heman, Joel’s son, appointed as a musician in the house of the Lord (1 Chron. 6:31-33). Heman, Samuel’s grandson—along with Asaph, his right-hand man and the author of many of the psalms—served the Lord by singing joyful songs (15:16-17).

Even though a person seems indifferent toward the faith so precious to his or her parents, God is still at work. Things can change in later years, and seeds of faith may spring to life in generations to come.

No matter what the family situation may be, we know that “the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations.”