Monday is Memorial day. It is the day we remember those who died protecting our freedom.
We need to do this. For “there is no greater love than that a man lay down his life for his friends”. Though unknown to us these young men have been our friends.
Unnumbered young marched off into the crucible of war to give us the right of liberty.
We need to remember them.
We are also in a spiritual war. It is good to remember those who have fought the fight, finished the race, and have kept their faith in Jesus.
One of those in my life was Joe. Joe, a pastor, had an infectious laugh. His ministry was to conflicted churches to bring peace or to resolve conflict. Insults, mean comments, and gossip, just rolled off of him.
But most of all he had a gentle spirit that empathized with you. He was a man of gentle toughness. And he served a lifetime for the Lord he loved.
Bob was another spiritual friend who had a tremendous impact on my life. Although blind, his family and friends bought him a braille Bible. It took volumes to print the Bible in braille.
In his retirement he set up a small office in the back of his son-in-law’s business. He had a little heater to keep him warm in the winter. The summer warmth he didn’t worry about. Whenever I walked his makeshift office to visit he was always at his desk, fingers quickly going over lines of Scripture. He always had a look of delight and glory on his face. You could see he was in the presence of God.
One look and you knew this was holy ground. Watching for a few moments it was hard to interrupt his fellowship with God.
But he always had a warm welcome, regardless of your age or problem. His blindness gave him a sharper insight into the people he met. He could read your heart whether you were in trouble or had exciting news.
He too, fought his fight, finished his race, and kept his faith in Jesus. He was a true servant of Jesus. It is good to remember those who have served in the spiritual war between good and evil.
Perhaps it is my time of life that makes me pause and wonder about my legacy.
What legacy will I leave?
The only thing that matters is a legacy of love. First Corinthians 13:3 says, “So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love. “
Ultimately, all that matters is: love. Love for God and love for people.
We leave a legacy when we love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength.
Just as you enjoy being with your kids or grandkids, God enjoys being with you. Like at grandmas house she will find a little fingerprints on windows and mirrors. But mostly grandmas just laugh and leave the fingerprints because kids are more important than dirty windows.
We leave a legacy when we love our neighbor as ourselves. Loving your neighbor does not have to be a big thing. You can give a sandwich for someone who’s hungry, or a drink for the thirsty. Maybe you will welcome a stranger, or visit the sick.
Jesus makes a unique observation in Matthew chapter 25. When we do little things for other people, it is just as we did them for Jesus. We won’t recognize him but he will be there. We will not give much thought to doing these things. We will see the need and meet it. It will just come naturally because of our love for God.
Together may it be able to be said of us, we… “fought the fight, finished the race, and kept the faith.” And may the crown of righteousness be awarded for all who have loved and longed for Jesus’ appearing.