- What will I leave behind?
- What will I leave behind in my wife, children, and friends that are making a difference?
- What will I leave behind at work?
- What will be lasting in my ministry?
- What do I want to be remembered for?
- What would I like for my children to pass on to my grandchildren?
I can't really express how important this is to me. This business of leaving behind a wonderful legacy has really altered the way I view life. Think about your own life. Is there someone who has been a part of your life whose legacy has made all the difference? Maybe it was your dad or mom. Maybe it was another relative. Perhaps you had a good friend whose investment in your life made a wonderful difference.
The other day I was talking with a friend who is also a grandfather. This man has been spending one day per week with his grandchildren for a number of years. He said, "I am tired of the contemporary view of grand-parenting which amounts to little more than play with the grandchildren, spoil them, and then give them back to their parents. I am about ministry. I spend this time every week with these young grandchildren because there is a legacy that I want to leave with them. I want to help shape their lives and pass on some values that have been very important in my life. That is my ministry."
I think he is right on target. Now here are a few things I want to pass on:
- I want to pass on Jesus. Not just Jesus preached (I obviously believe that is pretty important). I want to pass on Jesus demonstrated.
- I want to pass on to my wife the legacy of a man who took his commitments seriously. I want Charlotte to remember that she could trust me.
- I want my girls to remember that their dad was faithful to their family.
- I want to pass on to my children the importance of treating people right--no matter who they are. No matter how wealthy or how poor.
- I want them to remember the importance of paying debts, keeping promises, and being genuinely interested in people.
- I want to pass on to my children the special place of the Word of God in their lives. I want them to know that they can have confidence in Scripture as it points them to God, revealing his will and desires for their lives.
- I want to pass on to the churches that I served the importance of personal integrity and having a passion for God.
What about you? What do you wish to pass on?