Connect with us

Faith

Leaving a Legacy

How will you live out your years and what will your legacy be?

Published

on

“Taste every one of time’s moments. Swallow. Taste the next. Drink the water. Drink the wine. It is no good left in the glass. Sweat and struggle. Run. Fight. Receive. Give. Be grateful even for death, for the ticking clock counting down on you. Seventy years. Eighty if you are strong. Less is you’re like the Messiah. Look to Him and receive more grace. Stagger on. You can do it.” — N.D. Wilson in Death by Living

His was the first voice who spoke the three words that brought hope to my adolescent heart: “I love you.” The rich baritone sound rang loud across the lines hundreds of miles from his home in Florida and into my ears. No one in my family had spoken those words to me before. His was the first.

There are people in our lives who make a lasting impact. My grandfather is one of those people.

One of his greatest legacies to me is how to seize life and live it to the fullest. Never a complainer, he took whatever God gave him in life and accepted it. A near deadly motor cycle accident brought him to faith, a faith that has been steady all my life.

A retired police officer from our nation’s capital, he has never stopped working and learning. He loved to sing so he joined a gospel barber shop quartet and the church choir. He taught himself to work with wood, using a lathe to make bowls and works of art. He wanted to learn the game of pool so he got a pool table and practiced with other retired men in his community.

I’ve always seen him as strong, confident, and secure. Fearless. As a child I would ask him about the tattoos covering his arms, tanned from hours spent fishing in the sun. He’d laugh and say it was something he did when he was young and bored during the War. And though he was strong, he was weakened by the unexpected death of my grandmother when I was fifteen. He learned then that life was short and not to be taken for granted. After that, he never ended a conversation or visit without telling us he loved us.

I called him for his eighty-eighth birthday last week. He laughed with joy at the boy’s singing to him over the phone. We talked about his plans to celebrate. Then he announced his diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease.

“Does that mean you’ll have to stop your wood working?” I asked.

“I’m doing it right now while we’re on the phone,” laughing even as he said it.

During our last visit, he showed the boys how to whittle wood. As I watched his shaking hands strip pieces from a block of Cyprus wood, I wondered, what kind of legacy will I leave for my children and grandchildren? Will they remember me for living life to the fullest? Will they see me as wasting the time I have? Will they remember me as living faithfully for God or complaining about life’s trials and challenges?

Getting older is sobering. When we are young, it always seems far off into the future. Then one day you are there and it’s too late to go back. I want to spend all the time God has given me to the fullest. I want to enjoy the blessings He’s given me and not take any of it for granted. I want to learn from the lessons He gives and live each day in humble reliance upon His sustaining grace.

I want my grandfather’s legacy to me to be one that I pass on to my own children and grandchildren.

How about you? How will you live out your years and what will your legacy be?

Christina Fox received her undergraduate degree from Covenant College and her Master's Degree in Counseling from Palm Beach Atlantic University. She writes for a number of Christian ministries and publications including Desiring God Ministries and The Gospel Coalition. She is the author of A Heart Set Free: A Journey Through the Psalms of Lament (Christian Focus, 2016). You can find her at www.christinafox.com, @christinarfox and www.Facebook.com/ChristinaFoxAuthor.

Welcome to Ungrind!

Do you want to be inspired, motivated, and equipped to live the everyday story of your life well?

If so, you’re in the right place. Whether you need encouragement in your relationships or in your faith, I hope you’ll find the transparent voices of mentors and friends here at Ungrind.

So, grab a cup of coffee and keep reading. We're so glad you're here!

Ashleigh Slater, Founder & Managing Editor

Get Our Free Ebook!

Sign up to receive weekly emails from Ungrind and you’ll get the free ebook, Better Together. Be encouraged by stories of hope from women just like you!

Latest Articles

What Women Are Saying

"Ungrind is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. Whether you're facing a challenge or experiencing great joy, Ungrind has something to say to you today."

-- Arlene Pellicane, co-author of Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World and 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife

Featured Resource

"Real life is not always pleasant. Every marriage experiences disappointments, misunderstandings, sickness and financial crisis. Ashleigh doesn’t camouflage the pain in her own marriage, and offers practical ideas on how to walk through the difficulties and find intimacy on the journey. If you are anything like me, I predict that as you read, you too will find yourself laughing, wiping tears, and saying 'Oh, yes.'"

-- Gary Chapman, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The 5 Love Languages

Disclosure

We are a member of the Amazon affiliate program and regularly use affiliate links. If you purchase an item from an Amazon link we provide, we will receive a small referral commission. This doesn’t cost you anything additional. We only share books, music, and products that our writers personally have used and highly recommend.

Trending

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!

Leaving a Legacy

by Christina Fox time to read: 3 min