After posting on the blog Saturday about the importance of recording a spiritual legacy, there has been more interest about it than any of my blogs so far. (not that I have racked up oodles of them. I’m only starting!)
I am no expert by any means, but I can give you some tips that got me going. Adapt it to make it an adventure that you and God create together.
1. Pray for guidance and for your words to be His words. This last part is so important! Take it from a radio host of 17 years. It has protected me from getting into oodles of trouble.
2. During the course of several days I wrote down every ‘God/Jesus/church’ memory I had and beyond. As I went along it worked into how a relationship developed. I am wordy and love a good story, but if your goal is to get to the big moments, that would be just as wonderful.
3. As I wrote, others memories would come and I found that this was going to take much more time than I figured. I wasn’t going to just ‘whip this out’. Don’t get discouraged as that means you have much to share.
4. Warning: the more open and honest you are, the harder it is. You do what you feel God calling you to do. I am a pretty open person, but I do have a few things I am not comfortable with sharing with the world. I went ahead and went there so my kids could learn from my mistakes and see the depth of God’s grace through their mama. I had a kleenex blizzard as I wrote about my folks divorce, the gift of Mr. Cliff Long in my life, miscarriages, huge mistakes I made and I am amazed God still called me His own, births of babies, Grandpa Moore and Cliff’s brother passing away (huge grabbing-on-to-God moments, but in totally different ways), a breast lump totally disappearing under the hands of a dumbstruck doctor, provision and protection for my family, my mom’s illness challenges this last year and the list goes on. You may never be able to go there on some issues. That is quite all right. Don’t beat yourself up. God will either walk you through it or give you a free pass. You will know.
There are a couple of benefits when you dig deep. (A) It is great therapy. Things can start to come together that wouldn’t otherwise and some ‘aha!’ moments may show up. (B) When you share from the heart it becomes very real to others, even if making you uncomfortable is your sacrifice. (C) As you do this, the more you go from you being the main character to God becoming the star. What a wonderful act of worship!
5. The stories will continue as life marches on. Don’t put “The End” too hastily.
So what if you aren’t a writer type? What about a scrapbook or through pictures? God is so creative, I bet He will help you come up with your own way. I read where sometimes a simple letter was enough. A friend wrote me yesterday that they asked her grandpa to tell his story at their family reunion. He was reluctant at first, but came around. What a precious memory she has and the whole family was clued in on how God worked in his life. Many very close to him did not know his amazing story. What a shame if it had been lost!
Well, that’s all I have. My hope and prayer is that your legacy will touch the lives of many in ways you can not even fathom!