You are going to die. Ok, I know. I know. That was a heavy sentence to read while you eat your kale and zucchini salad for lunch. You were just scrolling through your social media, and BAM! some schmuck is there to remind you that life will end soon enough.
Nobody wants to think about his or her own mortality. It forces us to think about life choices, regrets, failed dreams, etc. We would rather watch funny cat YouTube videos than ponder over our legacy.
For a moment, though, pause everything you are doing. That includes watching Netflix while you read this article, and answer the following question:
If I were to die today, what would my legacy be?
What was your answer? Was it a good answer? Did your answer disappoint you? Regardless, there is good news. Your final chapter has not been written yet. You still have the chance to write a new life story.
If you’re not dead, God’s not done.
That means if you’re reading this article, you are gifted with an opportunity to write the legacy you want to have. It’s not too late, but a better legacy demands better behaviors. In order to change our behaviors we must ask some life altering questions:
1. What is your relational legacy?
Are you the friend you want your friends to be? Do you parent the way you dreamed you would? Does your spouse know you love him or her? These are legacy-type questions.
So what do you do to ensure your answers to all those questions is a yes?
I once heard a preacher say, “Most people wait until funerals to tell their loved ones how they really feel. Why wait though? You can tell them today.”
In order to leave a successful relational legacy, start communicating with the people around about you how much they mean to you. Say I love you to your spouse. Go have a good time with your friends. Take your kid out and do something fun.
2. What is your financial legacy?
And you thought relationships was a heavy topic. Number two is on finances. Nobody likes it when the preacher brings up money. Don’t worry! I promise I’m not going to ask you for anything.
I don’t think I have to spell it out for you (if it feels like there is a “but” coming it’s because there is), but your financial legacy matters. Your finances will dictate if people think of you as selfish or generous, greedy or kind, caring or cold-hearted.
As old preachers used to always say, “You can’t pull a trailer behind a hearse. Your stuff isn’t going with you.”
If you can’t take it with you, then you should leave behind a legacy of wise financial principles to go along with your radical generosity. If you want to change financial future, then start budgeting today. Budget for the future you want to leave behind (talk about a paradox).
My wife and I use www.everydollar.com by Dave Ramsey. Use whatever budget you want, but your financial legacy should change today.
3. What is your spiritual legacy?
Jesus said “Pick up your cross and follow me.” That means the moment you chose Jesus, you decided to participate in a new and better legacy. As I’ve said countless times before, “Jesus makes your life better and He makes you better at life.”
Your spiritual life should be filled with story after story of lives changed because they came in contact with you. If Jesus changed you, then naturally you will create a better world.
The beauty is that each of our spiritual legacies will look slightly different. Despite our uniqueness the commonality is that God changed our life, and we want to extend that same change to other. When your time on earth is done will people say you made a spiritual difference or you were simply spiritually indifferent?
10 out of 10 people die (Don’t email me about Enoch. There’s always one guy who wants to break the mold). You are one of those 10. If you will keep the end in mind, then you will leave a better legacy behind.
What do you want your legacy to be?
Comment below your thoughts.
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