Monday, August 23, 2010

#55 - Make it Count

Good morning! :) Well.... here I sit, the little town of New Paris, Indiana... outside in the gazebo by my parents pool. I'm sure my mom loves it! :) This is her special place she goes to spend time with the Lord. :) When I lived at home, this was a special place for me too. I remember in the summer during my break from college sitting out here for hours reading my Bible, studying the Word. I was a waitress and often didn't work until 2:00 or 3:00. My mornings would be filled with studying the book of Matthew. I remember exactly what I was learning, and I remember why I learned it at that specific time. During that time of my life was just the beginning of really establishing my foundation in the Lord. Developing that hunger that would continue to grow and grow and grow. Tyler is flying back home this afternoon. Teej (aka: The Boy) & I are flying back home on SUNDAY!!! A whole WEEK from now. Even though I was a bit apprehensive to be away from Tyler for a WHOLE WEEK.... I'm sure we will have a good time here visiting with the family... spending time with grandpa... and maybe just relaxing a bit from an exhausting week preparing for grandma's funeral. So... I will spend the next several mornings in my old spot... my place of early growth nearly 11-12 years ago. 
Proverbs 23:18 - For surely there is a latter end [a future and a reward], and your hope and expectation shall not be cut off.
Proverbs 31:28 - Her children rise up and call her blessed (happy, fortunate, and to be envied); and her husband boasts of and praises her.
Well.... how can I get away from referring to my grandmother? Everything is still so fresh. The feelings, the exhaustion, the memories. So, today's verses were most definitely appropriate. As we have been in the cemetery (I've already been there 4 times!!!).... an epitaph near my grandmothers was of a mother & wife. On the epitaph was etched today's verse.... Proverbs 31:28 - Her children rise up and call her blessed; and her husband boasts of and praises her. What an awesome verse to go out on. To leave your life and people REALLY, truly call you blessed. To boast of and praise you and the imprint you have made on this world. A sure aspiration for me. 

A latter end. There is an end. It will most definitely come for all of us. The excitement about "the end" is that we can have a hope & expectation! How exciting! As believers, we can really know that the end is better than the now! The end entails DANCING on streets of gold! The end is not bad! What a wonderful thing to have a hope & expectation about. A future reward. The expectation of meeting Jesus.... receiving our heavenly mansion! Perfection. No pain. No trials that come along with being in "the world". Perfection. How glorious to think about! A life with Jesus. Imagine how beautiful it will be. 

Despite the funny and naivete of my nephew Karson.... He was recently driving with his dad Lenny. Karson, being 4 is in the "question asking stage". Why? Why dad? Daddy, why? He is full of it! Full of why why why. Full of humor and just funniness! So, experiencing a lot of talk lately of death & dying... Karson was driving with his dad and said, "Dad, will their be trucks in heaven?" ... Lenny, probably half listening (since Karson asks questions constantly) replied, "Son, probably not. I don't think they need trucks in heaven." Karson waited a bit and then asked another question, "Dad, will their be tractors in heaven?" Lenny replied, "Son, I don't think they need tractors in heaven. Probably not." Karson waited a bit then and responded with... "Well dad, I don't think I want to go to heaven then." 

Funny! He is so funny! I think there will be tractors in heaven for Karson. But heaven will be such a glorious place! A place of rejoicing, dancing, full abundance! 

Though my grandma only had one child, my dad Jim.... he most certainly rises up and calls her blessed. And Grandpa has most definitely praised her! She lived a life committed to serving him. Serving him. Ironing for him. Cooking for him. Cleaning for him. Loving him. Meeting his needs. Being his friend. Laughing with him. He most definitely has called her blessed. She lived a life to serve her husband, and he has been blessed. The last 3-8 years have been different. But before she became ill, she lived to serve. And actually... even in the greatest stages of Alzheimer's, she still served. She walked around scratching backs, hugging people, kissing them, cleaning up dishes, straightening things, telling people "I love you". She served til the end. She made the best strawberry pie... and such good crust! :) She served. Lord willing, my grandpa will remember the good times. The tribute video to grandma sure does help remember the good times. ( She was so full of life. She was so full of fun. She was spunky & sassy & beautiful. 

Her child, her husband & her grandchildren most definitely rise up and call her blessed! Every day was a good day for her! I don't EVER remember hearing her  just dump negative on people. She was always positive. Always smiling. Always full of joy. Her life was FULL!

I encourage you to think about your "today." How are you living your "today?" What would people say about you when you leave. There is an end. When that end comes, what will be the legacy that you left? What will your spouse say about you? What will your family, your friends say? "Man, she never really smiled. I didn't like to be around her because she was always talking about people. It always seemed to drag me down. She was always negative." Or... will people be able to rejoice about who you were? Rejoice about what a positive impact you made into the lives of others? 

Decide today to model your life after the legacy you want to leave. YOU decide your legacy. What will people put on your epitaph? Make it a good one. Make it count!

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