Recycling and being concerned with our carbon footprint seems to be all the rage right now. While we should be looking for ways to shrink the size of the environmental footprint that we leave for the next generation, we need to increase the spiritual footprint we are leaving. In order to leave a legacy, we need to be intentional about making a lasting impression on others.
The first detail you need to focus on when desiring to leave a lasting legacy is cleaning out the clutter. I am not talking about that crazy hall closet that is packed so full that no one dares open the door. I am talking about the clutter in your heart; the unresolved issues, bitterness, unforgiveness and sin. Many times we try and just stuff all of this stuff back into a corner in our hearts, thinking we never really need to deal with it. If we are not trying to ignore our own issues, then we are busy pointing out the problems in other people’s lives. It is easy to find fault in someone else and then justify our mistakes as small or even insignificant. However, God says that sin is sin. There are no categories or degrees of sin. We all fall short of the standards that He has set. Therefore, we need to come to Christ and let Him wash us white as snow and take out the trash in our lives. If we do not take out the garbage in our hearts, then it will start polluting other areas of our lives. I am certain that no one would leave garbage sitting around his or her home for months or even years without taking care of it, so why do we choose to do that very thing with our heart issues?
Once we have taken out the trash and dealt with our own heart issues, then we need to start recycling grace. God has graciously forgiven you of your sins, faults and mistakes. Therefore, you and I need to grant the same kind of grace to those around us. Think of how forgiving you are, would you want God to forgive you like you forgive others? In order to leave a lasting legacy, an eternal footprint, then we must be willing to grant forgiveness to others. I will close with this quote from Author Jackie Windspear, “Grace isn’t a little prayer you chant before receiving a meal. It’s a way to live.”
Questions to Consider:
- Think of a loved one who has passed away. What kind of spiritual legacy did he or she leave? What qualities would you like to emulate in your own life?
- Spend time with God today and thank Him for the grace He has graciously given to you. Then go to someone you have wronged and ask for forgiveness.
- Think of someone you need to extend grace to this week.