Written by: Megan Kincheloe
A few years ago I lost my Papa…my maternal grandfather. He was my earthly hero and I miss him so very much. When he passed away, I was blessed to be able to give the eulogy at his funeral service. Before he even passed away, God had placed the words on my heart that needed to be shared on this day. I spoke about the fruits of the spirit. Galatians 5:22-23 states, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against these things there is no law.” (NIV). You see, my Papa exemplified the fruits of the spirit in so many ways and my heart longs to be just like him in that way.
A couple of years later, a lady who was very dear to my heart went to be with our heavenly father. She was my husband’s grandmother and she made such an impact on my life during the 10 years I was able to get to know her. During her funeral service, her pastor talked about her legacy and how she resembled a saint. According to http://www.dictionary.com, a saint is, “Any certain person of exceptional holiness of life.” God’s word instructs us to be holy. 2 Timothy 2:21 states, “Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.”
The passing of these dear souls left me considering what my legacy will be when I leave earth to join our heavenly father. A legacy is something that we leave behind. In his case and in her case, they left behind a legacy of faith, love, joy, compassion, and a servant’s heart.
You may be wondering, “What does this have to do with me? I am young and plan to live for many years to come.” Well…here is the thing, you may just be right! And the longer you live, the more time you have to define your legacy. Every choice you make in life…counts.
There are many parts of you that contribute to your legacy. I am going to touch on three.
Your character contributes to your legacy. Will you be remembered for having positive character traits such as being generous, loyal, faithful, and honest? Or will you be remembered for having negative character traits by being selfish, deceitful, unreliable, or insensitive. Ladies, let’s pause right here real quick. Your past choices, sins, and mistakes do not define your character. We are all sinners living in a broken world. How you redeem yourself from those bad decisions by repenting and accepting grace from your heavenly father is what matters.
Your actions contribute to your legacy. Will you be remembered as someone who acts impulsively before thinking or someone who prayerfully considers each decision before moving forward and committing to a plan? Let me be real and expose myself here. This one is really difficult for me. I have a tendency to be a people pleaser and God is really working in me on this very topic. One thing I have really disliked about myself over the years is when I overcommit and then am unable to follow through with my commitments. Take time to prayerfully consider what is being asked of you so you are able to glorify God and commit 100% when you say “yes.”
The way you love others contributes to your legacy. God commands us in John 15:12, “Love each other the way I have loved you.” (NIV). He even goes as far as saying in Matthew 5:44, “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” (NIV). He is so clear in how He instructs us to love others and He covers everyone…no matter what race, religion, career path, economic status, or lifestyle…we are to LOVE them. Even our enemies and those who persecute us! He wants us to pray for them gals! He does not tell us we have to bear our souls to them or be best friends with each person we meet. We also do not have to approve of the choices people are making if they are living a life in sin…but our job is not to judge them in their sin because we are sinners too. Our job is to love them and do our best to lead them to the truth.
Yes you are young, but it is NEVER too early to begin living out the legacy you want to leave behind. You have an opportunity to begin being a light in the world right this very minute. I’m all in! Will you join me?
My love to you ladies…xoxo