As a mom, one of my greatest desires is to leave a legacy for my kids. While I may leave a family or financial legacy, my hope is that I leave them with a spiritual legacy that will point them to Jesus and inspire them to live for Him.
Because, as a Christian, I have only two options when it comes to leaving a legacy. I can choose to leave a legacy that glorifies God and points to Jesus. Or, I can leave a legacy that will glorify me and my accomplishments.
While I have made my fair share of mistakes (and will) with my kids over the years, I hope that when I die they’ll reflect over my life and realize everything I did was pointing them to Jesus. Not setting them up for worldly success, but showing hints of the love God has for all of us that would cause them to follow hard after Jesus.
Just writing that last sentence makes me pause and realize how far I need to go to leave this kind of legacy.
I began thinking about the topic of legacy a few weeks ago when a couple of situations came up that made me realize those who lived in the past have an impact on things that are happening today. By that I mean their actions, whether good or bad, have a tremendous effect on people and events today.
Specifically, I’m thinking about two situations in two different organizations. Without going into great detail, I can share that people in leadership roles in the past chose to make decisions that were not transparent. They demanded their own way and generally made life hard for others.
Now 50+ years later, those who are currently in leadership are having to make tough decisions that will affect 1000s of people. While they may have had good intentions at the time and did not mean to cause complications, these tough decisions are a result of what the leaders of the past chose to do.
You see, what we choose to do today can affect the lives of others tomorrow.
I want my choices to be intentional and made with the understanding that I can affect the future for the good or the bad.
As I mentioned above, I want to leave a legacy that honors God and points to Jesus. So, I’ve thought about a few ways I can live my life that will reflect this desire. Maybe some of these ideas will speak to you as well.
How is my social media interaction? Do I constantly put down others publicly even in veiled posts that don’t mention anyone by name? Am I always critical? Or, do I reflect the love of Christ and share what He’s doing in my life? Do I show I care about others by interacting with them in a positive way?
Am I an effective church member? Do I criticize and complain when things aren’t done the way I think they should be done? Or do I jump in and help out where needed, using the gifts and talents with which God has blessed me?
In my everyday interactions with people am I gracious and kind? Or do I demand my own way? Am I a good neighbor?
Am I sharing about Jesus consistently? Or am I hiding that I’m a Christian?
Do I love my family and put their needs above mine? Or do I do what I want to do instead?
I’m grateful for my parents, grandparents, and other relatives who have left a rich spiritual legacy for me. Because of their legacy, I know what it means to live for Jesus and have a life that glorifies God. I hope and pray I can leave the same kind of legacy for my kids and my future descendants.
What kind of legacy will you leave behind?