I didn’t expect a visit with family to make me take a long look at the short time I have left, but it did. Now, I’m wondering about my legacy and hoping something in my life will last for years to come.
It happened like this:
“Are you working Wednesday?” my niece messaged me. “We’re gonna be in Tupelo for the choir competition. Can you come to join us?”
I had an appointment I couldn’t miss, but I managed to arrive in time to visit. My niece’s daughter looked terrific. “Great lipstick, Lindsey. I love the color. What is it?”
She named a brand. “It lasts a long time,” she explained as she pulled a tube of lip color out of her backpack.
“That looks like lip gloss.”
She painted a little color on her hand. “You’re gonna have a mess with that lipstick on your hand,” I warned. She merely smiled.
A few minutes later, she rubbed her fingertip across the color. “See, all dry. Feel it. It’s matte and really soft, too.”
Of course, that led to a discussion about the brand, where to purchase it, and how much. I feigned shock at the price. “Mercy, that better last a lifetime.”
My niece, who never holds back with me, said, “Oh, Anna. it’ll last your lifetime, anyway.”
“Girlfriend, if I could afford that lipstick, I’d expect you to put it on for me when I’m too old to put it on for myself.”
We laughed at the idea of Katie putting lipstick on me when I’m old and frail, but her words stuck with me. “It will last your lifetime.” My first response was indignant disagreement until I remembered my age. I’m not twenty-five anymore.
If I want to leave a lasting legacy, I better hurry.
McMillian online dictionary defines a legacy as “something…achieved that continues to exist…” Most of the time, a legacy is financial, but I want to leave something more important than money. I’d like to accomplish something that not only exists after I’m gone but also continues to make a difference.
If I want to leave a positive legacy, I must live a positive-impact life. A life centered on people, not things. A life directed toward the eternal and not the temporal. I must help the least of these and live with open heart and open hands.
To leave it later, I need to live it now.
Love not hate. Peace not turmoil. Generosity, not greed. Hope not despair. Jesus, not the world.
Perhaps we should all take a long look at our lives. Do we live with a legacy in mind? Do we accumulate stuff or consciously choose those actions which are likely to last long after we’re gone?
Leave a legacy. Start today.
If we want to leave a lasting difference, we must start today. Love with abandon. Give without measure. Serve without limits. Preach Jesus with our lives and use words only if we must.
The Lord knows the days of the upright and blameless, and their heritage will abide forever. (Psalm 37:18 AMP)
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