Legacy: consequence, effect, by-product, result, repercussion
There are a lot of men who creep
Into the world to eat and sleep,
And know no reason why they’re born
Save only to consume the corn,
Devour the cattle, bread and fish,
And leave behind an empty dish;
And if their tombstones, when they die,
Were not to flatter or to lie,
There’s nothing better can be said
Than that they’ve eaten up their bread,
Drunk up their drink, and gone to bed.
What will be the by-product of your life? What ripples will you make in the pond? When you leave this world, what will the record say about the 1.75 cubic feet of space you used up every day for 25, 50, 75 years or more? What will be the repercussion of your life?
No matter what stage of life you are living out, now is the time to make mid-course corrections.
Jesus, in response to the Pharisees’ criticism about not practicing religion the proper way, said, “…who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before” (Mark 2:21). While Jesus was telling the Pharisees His new order of Life could never be represented by a patched up coat, we can also apply His words to legacy.
Don’t be content with a few little patches here and there when what you need is a new coat.
Mid-course corrections are all or nothing. During the Lunar space program in the 60’s, NASA made mid-course corrections—maybe on every moon shot. Otherwise the space craft would completely miss the moon. The correction had to be total—not partial. Half corrections were not satisfactory. The lives of the astronauts depended on it.
I don’t want my legacy to be a shoddy patchwork of half-hearted commitments to Jesus. I don’t want the by-product of my life to miss the mark because I was not totally committed to the mission of making disciples who make disciples.
Take heart! “…anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Don’t hang on to the old way when Christ offers something brand new. That’s the story line of the Bible: fresh starts, new beginnings. Because “it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).
So you want to make an impact in this world; you want a strong legacy? First, decide whether you want your life to look like the gaudy coat a clown wears at the circus—full of patches, or whether you want to be a brand new creation. If “new creation” is your choice, then embrace what Jesus can do for you, not what you think you can do for you. Embrace Him—right now, as best as you know how and as much as you know how. And the process will begin. Jesus is offering you a new coat right now!