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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

I want to leave a legacy, how will they remember me?

                 The title to this post is a line from a song called “Legacy” by Nicole Nordeman  (lyrics here).  This song along with “Do They See Jesus in Me?” by Joy Williams (lyrics here) are two songs with lyrics that speak to my heart in wanting to live in such a way that people see Jesus touch in my life and be pointed to Him, not only in my life but also in death. 

                There are a few people that I just couldn’t shake out of my head last night as I tried to sleep.  I was thinking of their upstanding testimony and impact on my life be it directly or indirectly. 

                I’ll start with a woman whom I never met but was one of the charter founding members of the church I currently attend.  I attended her funeral this July and was greatly blessed by listening to the testimony of others shared during the celebration of her life and homegoing.  The underlying theme of each testimony was that she was a woman of few words but when she spoke, she spoke wisdom and peace to others.  She ministered in such a way that was life on life discipleship and everyone knew she knew Jesus by her love.  I did not know this woman, but her testimony deeply impacted me.  It reminded me to let me words be few and my prayers be deep.

                The second and third person that came to my mind are my grandparents on my mother’s side.  They both went home to be with the Lord before I even entered middle school and most of my memories are from their years in a nursing home but it’s their life long testimony that I hold on to now.  My grandmother served as a missionary in Bolivia prior to her marriage and continued to minister in the local church and to her family after.  My grandfather was a hard working farmer but he also owned and operated a Christian Book store for a number of years.  The story that always sticks with me about him is that people would come into the store looking for one book, and my grandpa would then suggest five other good books on the topic and give it to them for free.  His job was not for profit but for ministry.  He used his position to share Christ with others, pray and disciple them over the years.  I am ever grateful for the godly heritage I was placed in.

                And the last person that came to mind was my own mother.  It’s been almost ten years but I can remember her funeral like it was just yesterday.  It was a celebration of life and of Hope.  The Gospel was given plain and simple, and many, I believe, came to know Christ that day because they found the hope that my mother lived and thrived in.  I can think of a few of the specific people that shared their memories of mom and I cherish them to this day.  ((If anyone has any specific memories of mom that they want to share with me, let me know because I’d love to keep a journal of them as to not lose them as the years go on)). 

                My mother left a legacy… where I can certainly say that I saw Jesus in her daily.  A woman full of grace and compassion.  A woman that esteemed others more highly than herself.  A bright example of a follower of Christ.  And I hope, that though she is now gone from this earth and in the presence of God, that a bit of Hope continues to live on within me.  Every Christian is firstly a product of grace but many a times, we can trace back the seeds planted and sown over the years.  It makes for a great faith family tree.  I am thankful for those whom have invested in me and I pray that I can continue this reaping and sowing in the years God has entrusted me with.

                So from these four, I have learned some of the building blocks of legacy building.  Follow Christ first so that when others follow you, they know who the real Leader is.  Watch my words…be quick to pray and slow to speak.  Time invested makes all the difference.  Give freely because it’s not yours to begin with.  Be faithful to whatever field God has called you to be it a family, a church, a school, a work place, etc.  Love freely and laugh often.  And as much as you want to leave a testimony, don’t try so hard that it’s manufactured.  May they not see my good deeds but God’s mighty work done in me.    

"Is the face that I see in the mirror
the one I want others to see
Do I show in the way that I walk in my life
The love that You've given to me
My heart's desire is to be like You
In all that I do, all I am"
--“Do they see Jesus in me?” by Joy Williams

Until next time,
In Christ,
Joy Lynn

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