Our family recently celebrated my grandmother’s 85th birthday. Family members from all over the country reunited in the small rural community where I grew up and my grandmother spent her entire life. I’m not sure if it is my age or the fact that I now have kids, but I spent a large part of the time reflecting on the rich heritage that I come from. I was reminded of the incredible work ethic, humility, faithfulness, and genuine goodness that is mysteriously embedded in my grandparents, parents, and uncles and aunts. It can be intimidating and even scary to think about living up to that legacy. However, something special happened when we were all in the same room with each other. Any fears that I had about my ability to carry on such a legacy were quickly overshadowed by a profound sense of honor and gratitude that I would even get the opportunity in the first place.
Questscope’s 25th Anniversary celebration in May was a similar experience. Many entered the room that night being intimately connected to the past. They carry the memories and stories of Questscope over the years. They have sacrificed time and money to see the mission and vision of Questscope be carried out with integrity, passion, and faithfulness. They are a part of Questscope and Questscope is a part of them. They represent the heritage.
Others entered the room with little connection to the past but a growing commitment to the future. They’re learning how to steward the sense of purpose and hope they have for the world and their own lives. The stories of the past fuel their imagination for what’s possible in the future. Many are wrestling with what it means to carry on the heritage of Questscope as well as understand how their unique contribution will shape the legacy in years to come.
Something special happened when these two groups were in the same room with each other. I saw the older generation fill with hope and excitement as they witnessed the engagement and enthusiasm of the younger generation. There seemed to be a deep sense of encouragement to realize that the years of investment were not lost, but created the foundation for the younger generation to build on.
While building on this foundation could be incredibly intimidating, being in the same room also seemed to empower the younger generation. Feelings of inadequacy quickly disappear when those who helped shape the past are cheering you on in creating the future.
The 25th Anniversary celebration was a great reminder that the older and younger generations both need each other. Being in the same room was powerful and formative for both. It was an opportunity for Questscope to celebrate, reflect on the rich heritage, and think about the future with hope and anticipation. We can’t wait to see what the next 25 years bring!
By Stefan Van Voorst, June 22, 2013