This week it has been raining nonstop in D.C. Literally. The forecast at the beginning of the week indicated ceaseless rain, and this time the weathermen weren’t wrong. Every night I’ve gone to sleep hearing the patter of raindrops on the windows and have woken up to the same.
A natural side effect of dreary, gray skies and wet weather that makes you want to stay home with a cup of hot tea is, at least for me, a tendency to contemplate. There’s something about rainy weather that seems to steer my mind towards deep thought.
In the case of this week, I’ve been thinking about what kind of legacy I want to carry on and what kind of legacy I would like to pass down. I can’t take credit for thinking up this topic by myself–my mother emailed my siblings and me to ask us that poignant question in preparation for her Sunday School lesson this week. The question got me thinking, and instead of typing back a quick response I wanted to put some real thought into it. After all, many travelers, after leaving their places of origin and touring the grand sights of the world, are drawn to these types of thoughts by all that they see and experience. The world is complex, fascinating, heartbreaking, exciting, and puzzling, all at the same time, and a profound question to ask yourself is what kind of contribution you would like to make. In other words, what kind of tradition do you want to pass along to the next generation, and what kind of legacy do you want to leave behind.
After some careful thought, here was my response to that million dollar question, “What kind of legacy do you want to carry on, and what kind of legacy do you want to leave?”
Legacy I want to carry on:
Mammaw Douthit’s legacy is the one I want to carry on. She embodied humility, grace, strength, and love. She was firm in the Lord but gentle to everyone, regardless of where they came from. She was always loving, no matter what situation she faced. I want to teach my children what she taught–to focus on Christ, work diligently, and let your actions speak for themselves.
Legacy I hope to leave behind:
Value Christ’s opinion above that of others. Be willing to explore outside of the comfort zone, take chances, and understand that the Lord uses both successes and failures to mold you. Do not let Satan tell you that mistakes mean you’re unable to be used by the Lord. Be the kind of person that others can turn to for love, comfort, and the truth. Do not give up on relationships or situations when things get tough. Strive to love unconditionally like Christ did. Do the right thing regardless if others are watching. Aim to be multi-faceted, internationally aware, and well-balanced. Work hard, always be willing to learn, rest well, and laugh often.