How do you want to be remembered?
I hope that you and I have many years ahead of us. I pray that there is plenty of time for what really matters. But the reality is, at some point our days come to an end. Time will run out. And whenever that happens, it will likely feel as if life has been short.
As I have flipped through my Bible this week, I am drawn to the notes that I have written in the margins over the last few years. They serve as a reminder of the hopes, desires, and vision that has bubbled to the surface. This isn’t some type of laundry list of things to do in order to get ahead but rather practices, beliefs and attitudes that lead to transformation and freedom. Yet very few have become a reality. I have done little to experience more of God. And I still struggle with the fact that despite all I do for Him, I don’t necessarily like the person I am becoming. Pete Scazzero says, “What you do, matters. Who you are, matters more.” I’ve mixed up the two.
I want…I need areas in my life to be radically different but I keep doing the same thing over and over again, thinking that somehow it will change. You remember what they call that, don’t you?
The fact is, we all live on borrowed time. Some of us will get a “heads up” that life is coming to an end sooner rather than later. I have sat with some of those people, hearing their heart for what they hope for in the time that is left. I have never heard someone say they wish they would have spent more hours at the office or kept their house cleaner. There have been no stories about longing for more cars in the driveway or acres of land behind the house. No one has wished for more money or a bigger building.
What I have heard is a desire to be with people, to love them well and to serve them extravagantly. There is a greater urgency to give themselves away, to reproduce new life in others, to share whatever they have with the world. In a blink of an eye, priorities become crystal clear and all the reasons or excuses that we once gave in the past…to neglect what truly matters…they all disappear. The truth is, most things that we strive for in this life will fade away. But we are able to leave a lasting, life-giving legacy by living today like it was one of our last.
You will leave something behind…what will it be? Will it be what you know matters more than anything else? Or will you let time tick away and things stay the same? These are the questions that keep coming to my mind. As Abraham Lincoln said, “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” Spend some time thinking about how you want to be remembered. Who is most important to you? What are your priorities? How can you protect and nurture those things?
My prayer for us today:
Teach us to number our days,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom.