Updated: Oct 22, 2021
Great people consciously take responsibility for their legacy.
Martin Luther King Junior. Adolph Hitler. Mother Theresa. Mohammed Ali. Benny Hinn. Bill Gates. Each name carries a distinctive picture of the legacy the life is dedicated to pursue.
Many people simply lived like they will never die and died like they never lived. What a tragedy!
The fact of the matter is that people do not simply die or leave a place without impact. They mostly leave behind memories, influences and ideas that affect lives of others either for good or for evil. Good legacy is however never left by accident. Great people consciously take responsibility for their legacy.
Lesson in Legacy
And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also. 2 Tim 2:2 (KJV)
Apostle Paul, who obviously is not alive in our memories today by accident, in the above scripture taught his protégé, Timothy, how to pursue immortality in life by passing his legacy to faithful people that are capable of passing it on to other people.
Legacy is being outlasted by your work and outlived by your memory. Solomon Osoko
Legacy is being outlasted by your work
What do I invest most of my life doing?
Legacy is about your work lasting on long after your departure.
Beware that what you daily invest your life doing could outlast you.
Your conducts have greater influence on people around you more than you can imagine. Some people are who they are today because of who their parents and friends were. Mostly when parents die, their children do not only carry on with their material inheritance but also with their principles, characters and manners of life.
When your name is mentioned today, what picture and emotion will it evoke from people?
Your legacy is not limited only to what you lived for but also includes how you live and what you leave behind. As the author of your life story, let us see areas you may like to pay due attention in the process of scripting your life manuscripts.
1. What you live for?
The quality of a man’s life is determined by what he invests his life in. God does not decide your impact and legacy on earth, you decide it by what you focus your life on. Many wrongly spend time on selfish projects that satisfy only their personal lusts and greed at the expense of other people. It is not better either to invest time on acquiring fame or recognition since no dead person recognizes ovation after death. It is only when your focus is beyond your life that you can create hope and happiness for others
Will your children and people after you be ruined or built up for following after your footsteps? That is a question every rational and civilized citizen of the earth should answer before embarking on any project.
2. How you live?
The way you live your life is as important as what you choose to invest it on. You need to have values you consciously observe in pursuit of your life goals if you do not want prosperity to pass you by. Good character is better than gold. Have you ever lived or worked close to a human tornado, who brings down anything standing on his or her way? What an ugly way to go through life. If people should prefer you absent than present, weak than strong and dead than alive, then you have got to take another look at yourself and the legacy you are creating with your existence. If you move around like someone baptized with lemon juice, how do you expect people to remember you? I once heard of a great industrialist whose burial witnessed turnout of almost all his employers whose only reason for attendance was to make sure their tormentor was truly dead. What a legacy!
3. What you document?
Creating good legacy is about adding values to lives of people living after you. There are things only you are privileged to see and document. See your action as a seed into the lives of those who will continue to live after you.
Leave good pictures of your life behind by creating albums of important events of your life.
Create libraries of ideas and principles that you consider important.
Document your will and whatever could help other people manoeuvre easily through life. Keep records of all information that could make life easier for your family. Do you owe people or do people owe you? Keep a tidy list. How often people lose family fortunes for lack of proper documentation. I mean if you do not keep records of things pertaining to your existence, who will do it for you?
4. What you collect?
Legacy is about leaving rich precedence behind. Live consciously as benefactor to your children and inheritors. Permit yourself to collect valuable books, journals, and principles that can make up leeway to anyone that comes after you. Look for memorabilia from holidays, career and interests and store some for posterity. Let your library be a storage of priceless wisdom.
Legacy is being outlived by your memory
What do I want to be remembered by? Legacy is about you living on in people’s memory after your departure. Great people take great responsibility for their personal existence.
They are those who have learned how to permit their earthly efforts to increase their after-life rewards long after their departure. For instance, every soul saved today continues to go to Jesus’ salvation account thousand of years after His death and resurrection.
Wherever the epistles of Apostle Paul, Matthew, Mark, and other Bible writers are read today, these men come alive and continue to bear fruits of a purposeful living.
There are many artists and professionals whose foundations and institutions are earning millions of dollars years after they have passed away. Same principle applies to those who lived wickedly as they and their descendants continue to gather condemnation as long as their legacies continue to harm lives of other people after them. When your term on earth comes to an end, how will you like to be remembered?
1. The solution you offer determines the strength of your life.
Working for financial reward alone is a cheap way of existence. The all-purposeful God couldn't have created any man just to count millions of paper deposited in bank. The reward for good service is far greater than money. When you invest your life to offer solutions that go beyond your immediate material needs, your actual reward could have impact beyond the space and period you live. The memory of Thomas Edison lingers on wherever electricity is used. Without his perfecting the light bulb and dozens of other devices (like meters, insulation, fuses, switches, junction boxes and indicator panels) used to produce and distribute electricity, the world would not have been able to establish electrical power systems or commercialize them. We appreciate the lives of the Wright Brothers (Orville and Wilbur) for inventing flying machine. Thanks to Alexander Graham Bell and Antonio Meucci whose works have made telephone communication a reality. Thanks to great believers like Apostle Paul and Billy Graham whose obedient services to God have brought good news of the kingdom of God into the world. The works of these great people keep them alive in our memories as we continue to enjoy the solution they devoted their lives to offer long after their demise.
2. The manner you live determines the length of your life
It is an open secret that one's lifestyle affects the length of physical existence.
Many have lost lives to drug addiction, civil execution for criminal and other forms of illegal conducts, etcetera. However, your character and attitude in life will go beyond the present to affect your eternity.
Do not just limit your expectation to earthly remuneration but also reckon with your heavenly rewards. The Bible questions the wisdom behind material acquisition that deprives man of his soul (Mark 8:36.) It is sheer stupidity to sacrifice the joy of your eternity on the altar of momentary happiness. A good name outlives cheap riches. Perhaps you see why the greatest legacy you can leave in peoples’ life is to affect positively their eternity.
3. Making greatest impact on people’s existence
Since man is a spirit that will forever live, any impact you play in affecting the final place of destination of people around you would have the greatest impact on their existence.
It is your responsibility to live in a way that those after you can live better, happier, richer and saver. Keep focus on the long-term impact of your endeavours.
Refuse to be short-sighted by the gains of the moment.
Short-sighted people are mostly short-circuited in life.
The day you die, would it have mattered that you ever lived?
Would your life be a blessing or a burden for your generation when your time on earth expires? Answering these questions could help you live consciously the way you want to be remembered.
Today is just the first day of the remaining days of your life.
As you continue to write your life history, decide to erase bad memories, omit confusion and stay focused on writing in bold letters what you would like to leave behind as your life’s legacy.