1999-10-27 - Legacy
Judg 10:1-5 (NLT) After Abimelech's death, Tola, the son of Puah and descendant of Dodo, came to rescue Israel. He was from the tribe of Issachar but lived in the town of Shamir in the hill country of Ephraim. He was Israel's judge for twenty-three years. When he died, he was buried in Shamir. After Tola died, a man from Gilead named Jair judged Israel for twenty-two years. His thirty sons rode around on thirty donkeys, and they owned thirty towns in the land of Gilead, which are still called the Towns of Jair. When Jair died, he was buried in Kamon.
Just what is a legacy? In our passage today, the different Judges have their legacies named -- how long and where they ruled, how many sons and donkeys they possessed, and where they were buried. Webster defines legacy as "something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past ."
Walt Disney World has added an interesting sculpture at the entrance to the Epcot area. It is called the "Leave a Legacy Sculpture." People pay $35.00 to have their digital photo etched onto the sculpture. You can also have your image, along with your hopes and dreams for your family, placed on a special website. This is for present and future generations to see and read. Disney calls this your legacy. I call it crazy. I hope we are not so shallow as to think that leaving a photo and a few words, will somehow validate our existence on earth.
What will your legacy be? Ponder with me for the next few minutes. Let's imagine that different people in our world are going to write our legacies for us. What would they write? What would your spouse write? What would your kids, your coworkers, your friends, your church family and your pastor write about you? What would you write? I wonder if the people around us would write the same general principles, indicating a balanced life? Or would they each be different, indicating a life of inconsistency? Think about it: How would you like to be remembered? Maybe you think your kids or spouse would write, "Dad was a great provider; we had everything we ever needed." In reality they would write, "Dad was never home; work was the most important area of his life." Perhaps you think your coworkers would write, "He was a fair and honest man, who always worked a full day." In reality they might write, "He was self-centered and greedy. He took office supplies home, and never gave his best." How about people at church? Maybe you hope they would write, "He always volunteered to be on the toughest committees; we could always count of him to get the job done." In reality they might write, "He served on a lot of committees, but he complained the entire time, neglected his family and brought down entire committees with his grumbling."
What changes need to be made to live a life of Christ-centered consistency?
Lord, help us all to leave a Christlike legacy to those in our lives. Help us to reflect Your values, Your dreams and Your hopes for us to those around us. In Christ's name, Amen.