Have you ever thought about what kind of legacy you are leaving behind. I assure you, you are leaving one. Everyone leaves a legacy- some good, some not so good, and some downright bad. But every once in awhile, someone comes along with the for-sight to make a difference in not just the here and now, but in eternity. And they pass this desire on to their children. It is evidenced by their grandchildren and great grandchildren continuing their vision.
Just last week we finished studying about Nate Saint. He is one of those who left such a legacy. He devoted his life to serving God in Ecuador. His heart’s desire was to take the Word of God to those who had never heard it and watch it change their souls for eternity. He and four others lost their lives to the hands of those they were trying to serve. But God used their deaths and the lives of his sister and one of the widows to finally reach these people. Most of the group that killed Nate Saint and the 4 other men gave their lives to Christ and are changed.
But what does all that have to do with leaving a legacy? Well, Nate Saint believed that God’s Word could change even the fiercest, deadliest warriors and was willing to die for that belief. And it did change those warriors, but it also changed his family. His sister continued to work among those people until her death (as an old woman). His son went to live among them following his aunt’s death, and now his grandson is working with them as well. That’s a legacy!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about jobs or careers. Nate’s son and grandson are doing different work than he did, but they share in the same passion for reaching others with the Word of God. That’s the kind of legacy I want to leave behind. And I think about this often as I teach my children each day-especially during those times when I’m not exemplifying such grand behaviors. And I know we all have those times when we want to say, “Don’t do as I’m doing right now, but do as I’ve said.” But the truth is more is caught than is taught. I once heard someone say that each action we take toward our children (whether word or deed) leaves a mark. That mark is either like one of a sculptor who is making the sculpture more like Christ. Or that mark is like a wound which leaves the sculpture scarred. Wow!
The fact is we are all leaving a legacy. Just what kind of legacy are we leaving? Is it evil? Most of us would probably say no to that. Is it something good, but not anything that will be remembered or passed down? Most of us probably would say we fall into this category. But why not raise the bar and want more for your kids. I want to leave a legacy that changes souls for eternity and causes my children’s children to continue that vision.