Attending the funeral of a friend today, I was reminded of the most important characteristics of his life. Characteristics that made an impact on his family, friends, and each person he came in contact with. Funerals always remind me to live the kind of life that will be impactful in a positive way toward others. So, how do you want to be remembered?
As I sat through the service, I was reminded of Mark’s passion for the Lord and his desire to serve others. His life was the epitome of what Jesus challenged His followers to do in the following commandment:
‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.” Matthew 22:37–40 (The Message)
As each person shared their memories, pictures scrolled of various seasons of life, and stories were told, it begs the question, how do I want to be remembered? I think that this is a question that each of us asks ourselves especially as we are reminded of the fragility of life. It is a question that deserves honesty in answering!
For me, I recognize that the first thing that I need to be remembered for is my love for God. From this relationship comes everything that is valuable in life. When I love God, then I am going to love others. For love comes from God!
Jesus challenged Peter with this very question when he said:
“Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was upset that he asked for the third time, “Do you love me?” so he answered, “Master, you know everything there is to know. You’ve got to know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. John 21:17 (The Message)
Notice that the establishment of the love that Peter had for the Lord, resulted in action toward others. It was not simply a declaration of love, but a call to do something with the love. Peter was not just committed to loving in word only but had a responsibility to fulfill in his relationships.
So, how is Peter remembered today? He loved God enough to give his life to the ministry of preaching the gospel. His desire what to do what God had commanded him to do as if there was no other option. His love and care for the church and for people, in general, was exemplary. So much so that we are still talking about his life today.
I want my life to be remembered in this way. That I loved God with all of my heart and that it simply overflowed in the relationships I have around me. Additionally, I would love for people to see God in my life and actions. Pointing People to Jesus through my life!
I know that each of us makes the decision every day concerning who and how we are going to serve. Thinking about how we want to be remembered should result in making wise choices. While people could lie at your funeral about who you were. However, I would rather give those officiating my homegoing an easy subject. He loved God and he loved others!
Our lives are very short. The longer I live, the more I recognize this fact. My life has the potential to impact the people I come in contact with. It is my prayer that I will be remembered for my love. This is a choice that I have to make!
What about you? How do you want to be remembered? Live the life you would be proud to be remembered for. The choice is yours!
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