"It's easier to stay on the well worn path already made by others."
"You know, you're alone."
"Snowshoeing through undisturbed snow this deep will be a lot of work."
"Don't mess up this beautiful site by your snow shoe trail-when there are other trails to take.
"You can make a new path for others to follow."
As I listened to all these competing thoughts, a stillness overtook me. Whether I walked through the virgin snow or walked in an already established path was really of no consequence. What mattered was to walk. Every year up at the cabin, I take a winter walk by myself. Usually I take it at night, but the sub zero temps and my lingering head cold made me rethink the night time walk. I take this special winter walk to reflect on the past year, and refocus for the new year. I ask God for direction and for words of emphasis as I pray during my snowy winter walk. It is a special time of silence, cold, and crunching of snow beneath my feet. And if I am really fortunate, it is a time of looking into a crystal clear night sky at the thousands upon thousands of twinkling stars.
Though it wasn't at night, this years walk didn't disappoint. It was a beautiful bitter cold day, with the bluest sky punctuated by a scattering of feathery clouds. For this walk, I had snow shoes strapped to my feet. As I stood there looking at the pristine undisturbed snow, I thought of walking out into that snow, and leaving a trail that others might follow. Then my mind drifted to the paths we take in life, and how once we have stepped into a new day, or even a new minute, there is no erasing it. Our footprint has been left, our words have been heard, our actions have been observed. Every day, we leave a legacy.
I've been thinking a lot lately about legacy, as my husband and I have consulted a trust attorney to set up a will. He asks interesting questions. What do you want to leave, and to whom? How will you leave it? What is most important to you?
Loosely defined a legacy is something of value left by someone in the past. In that sense, we all leave a legacy; we all leave our footprint upon others. Whether we are young or older, every single human leaves something of themselves in whomever they encounter. But do we leave something of lasting value, something imperishable?
I don't want things or money or belongings to be my legacy. I want my legacy to simply be one woman's life journey to know, love and serve the Savior. One woman who sat at the feet of Jesus. A woman who tried to bring light to relationships and daily encounters in her life. I also hope others see my struggles, my battles with Satan in prayer, and the triumphs; that Satan didn't win. I hope they see forgiveness in action, both the giving of forgiveness and the many times I went to the deep well of forgiveness for the times I stumbled. I want my legacy to point right to Jesus. I pray my footsteps lead others to deep study of the word of God, fervent prayer, and joyful worship while serving God and others.
To walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. To be strengthened with power, according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. Colossians 1: 10-12
This is my aim, this is my goal, this the the imperishable gift I so long my footprints to lead to. What about you? What will your legacy be? Something to think about every day, whether young or old. Don't wait until you begin to contemplate setting up a trust or will. What IS of upmost importance to you? Figure it out and start living your legacy this very day. Leave footsteps to follow.