I have done a lot in my life. I have served in the forces, been a minister, and a teacher. I am a husband, a father, and a friend (and I hope a good one). I have travelled to every continent except South America and Antarctica. I have read books, seen literally thousands of movies.
Over the past few years, I have also learned a lot from my wife’s battle with cancer. She reads over 300 books a year, has travelled extensively as well. We between us have been to much of the world.
But what is the biggest lesson I have learned? Her cancer (and the death of our daughter previously) has made it clear that what we learn, and experience does not last beyond us. This is not to say that spiritual learning is without effect – in fact it is vital. But, the entertainments, general knowledge, and talents of this life pass.
This has become a real eyeopener as a minister and teacher. My multiple degrees in themselves, really don’t matter as laurels. The knowledge in my head is useless remaining in my head.
Here then is a really important point for all educators, ministers, and people in general. It is not what you have learned that matters. It is what you have taught that is your legacy. The lessons you teach in word and deed will live after you in those who have received them. The memories of your journeys and entertainments will live on in those your have shared the experiences with. It is about others not yourself in the end. Interestingly in this giving, you live on.
Jesus showed this. He gave up His life that others would live. He taught lesson that others could live by and share.
What lessons are we teaching today? What are we giving – not taking to the world? What is our legacy? Is it not time to start leaving one?