Leave a Legacy
How do you Leave a Legacy? I have been thinking about this blog post for awhile. Now that I’m getting older, I think about it a lot. I guess it’s true that as you start to look back on life, and the way you were raised, and the way you vowed you would raise your children, you start to wonder. I literally sat here for the last 5 minutes scratching my head, wondering how to even get what is in my head out and onto the computer. But it’s true that we wonder how many generations we will even be remembered here on earth, or at least I do. I took a test with Melanie the other night in a book called “How Well Do You Know Your Wife?” I did pretty well, surprisingly. One of the questions was, can she name at least 2 of her Great Grandparents? I said no. Well, I should have remembered she had gotten onto Ancestry.com a little while back so of course she did. The question though is, did they just leave a name on a census record or did they Leave a Legacy? I can name 2 of my Great Grandparents. I can because they were “characters” and my Daddy used to talk about them as his Grandparents. My Dad left a legacy of sorts with people in the community but he also bought some land he left us as an inheritance. So, what constitutes a Legacy and how do you leave a legacy with the next generation? How do you leave a positive mark on the world?
Leave a Legacy for your Children’s Children
A lot of people go through life just trying to make it from day to day. I certainly understand that. It is hard enough just to fill your tank with gas nowadays and save enough in case your roof leaks and needs repairing. So, how do you leave a legacy for your children’s children? You have to be WISE. In fact, I didn’t make any of this up. Whether you believe the Bible is God’s word or not (which I do, fyi), you have to admit wisdom of the ages is stored up in Proverbs. Proverbs 13:22 says “A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous.” (NIV) 2 verses later it says “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” There is a lot of wisdom there. So, what does that mean when it says an “inheritance”? Check this one out in verse 7 “One man pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth.” It’s packed with wisdom. So, now my focus has changed a bit. I truly do want to leave an inheritance for my children’s children. That means, unfortunately, that in today’s world, you have to have great wealth. I don’t mean just monetarily either. In order to leave a legacy, it could mean you are leaving a fortune for you children that they can use and pass on to their grandchildren. In order to do that, it has to be more than just money in a bank account. It also has to be something real and tangible you can pass on. The first thing that comes to my mind is Real Estate, but it can be anything that can be an income producing item that can be passed on. My Beachbody Coaching income is just that. It is willable, transferrable and sellable. So, as I build my Beachbody Coaching business, I’m helping people with their fitness journey and building a residual income for generations to come. I am also going to leave a legacy with my kids with fitness because they’ve seen my fitness journey. When I finished working out this morning to Body Beast, my 5 year old wanted to do P90X – Shoulders and Arms. How cool is that?
You don’t have to have money to Leave a Legacy
I was listening to Dave Ramsey last night on the radio. He is constantly telling people to Leave a Legacy. He asked a simple question. How many couples out there have been married for 30 years and are wealthy? The answer is not many. First, most people don’t stay married for 30 years so that is a small number to start with. Second, most people aren’t wealthy so that is a small number also. When you combine those two things, you are in a very small minority of people who have done that. The good news is, although wealth is good, you don’t have to be wealthy to leave a legacy. Some people misquote the Bible and say money is the root of all evil. It’s not. But the LOVE of money is. It’s all about priorities. If you value money and wealth and things, that is where your heart is. If you see money and wealth as a tool to help people, then you truly are on the verge of leaving a legacy for generations to come. I heard someone say one time that broke people can’t help broke people. That applies to money as well as spiritual things. If someone is emotionally broke and spent, they can’t help someone emotionally. If they are spiritually broke, they can’t help someone spiritually. In order to leave a legacy, you simply have to leave the world a better place than you found it. You have to go through life helping people. I’ll leave you with this, what example are you setting for your kids with your work ethic, your fitness, your nutrition, your spiritual life, your willingness to help people, your charitable giving, your marriage? The list goes on and on. I had to write my Eulogy not long ago as part of a leadership group and THAT was tough. What do you want people to say about you at your funeral? One of the best lessons in life I saw on a sign under a bridge down near the coast as a warning to boaters. It said simply this….and you ponder it if you dare when you leave a legacy…. “YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR WAKE!!
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