My grandma Compton died this week. She was a tall Kansas farm wife, 96 years on this earth with 16 children, 57 grandchildren and over 100 great-grandchildren so far. We all have people who leave marks in our hearts. I will always crave her hot chocolate mixed herself and cooked on the stove waiting for us to wake up. I will marvel at how she produced a new dessert for every meal even though some to the previous dessert remained. (What kid wouldn’t like that).
My deepest gratitude however is for the spiritual legacy she gave. Since my first 5 years were spent in Kansas, grandma was the first Sunday school teacher I remember. She infected us with a love for Jesus from the very beginning. Over the years she continued to remind us of Jesus in a loving way just came naturally for her. Granted I was one of the grandkids not at risk of cutting my own switch from the tree like I heard from aunts & uncles!
She was very human. Like all of us she learned, laughed at herself, and grew over the years. From this living-far-away grandchild’s perspective her legacy is that of modeling a genuine love for and faith in Jesus.
It reminds me that such legacies matter. Grandma’s is complete. What will yours be?
Some worry that they won’t leave much behind when their time comes. Others work hard to build an estate. But an inheritance is not a legacy. A legacy is the lasting impact of your life on others. The enduring memories you leave in the hearts of others as well is the life altering imprints. Your legacy is built daily through the heart and habits of your life.
The question is not if you will leave a legacy, but what kind it will be. Prov. 10:7 says “The memory of the righteous is blessed, But the name of the wicked will rot.” The key to a legacy that brings joy to others is right living and right relationships. Don’t leave legacy of regret and bitterness. Live for the good of others and not at their expense. Surely this is connected to Jesus instruction that we love as He loved… not just syrupy sentiment but with substantial compassion.
Decide to live each day with integrity and grace towards others. Then your legacy will bring joy and inspiration to those you leave behind. As a follower of Christ I believe drawing your life from growing faith in Him is the key to doing this successfully. To increase your chance of leaving a great legacy, find other Christ follower and ask them to help you get started. I’ve got to find out if anyone has that old hot chocolate recipe.
OH yeah… Paul has a great sermon this weekend that you won’t want to miss. I’ve heard the preview. It is very timely for all of us.