Learning Legacy through Loss

Have you ever thought about what you want to be remembered for, what legacy you want to leave behind?

This month, we experienced great loss. My Uncle Jimmy passed away July 7th at his home in North Carolina. Then on July 22nd we lost our loving family companion Gunner. To us, Gunner was our child, a hunting companion, a comforter of children who couldn’t fall asleep, a cuddler and snuggler, a bird dog, a swimmer, a dog who would never rest and loved his walks to the end. Gunner left a legacy of not only unconditional love to our family, but of strength, kindness and patience. We thank Gunner for the legacy he has left behind.

As I had heard the news of my Uncle, I began to reflect on the many memories we had with him. Only two short years ago we celebrated his 90th birthday with a big dinner and homemade ice cream. Last year, we made our annual beach trip with his entire family (they graciously invite us to attend and have done so for over 40 years). Yet, through all the beach memories, meals, and visits to their house the one thing that stands out to me about my Uncle Jimmy is that he prayed. And I’m not just talking before meal time; he prayed a lot and for all those around him.

I can remember that every time I spoke with my aunt and uncle, my uncle would leave the conversation saying “I pray for you”. Now listen, I hate to even say this but I’ve been that person in the past who has said I’d pray; but forgot, got lazy, or just didn’t do it. But not my uncle. He did it and remembered each person that needed prayer. He was the one you could count on to pray for you or others when you couldn’t do it yourself or needed more prayer power.

As his children and I spoke about this memory, one stated that “yes, that’s who he was, dinner was often cold when we ate because his prayers were so long.” Another said “he kept a running list next to his bed of those he needed to pray for”. This, this is a legacy. A legacy anyone would want to be remembered for and so I ask you today with my pen and paper in hand, “How can I pray for you?”

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Preserving with Purpose

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