A legacy of faith

By Michael Risley

During the American Revolutionary War, there were outstanding heroic women who helped bring about the emancipation of the United States from Britain.

These colonial women melted down their pots and pans for bullets for the war effort. They took their linens and finest garments that they had brought from England, having no way to replace them, and ripped them up for bandages for soldiers. They took their last bit of food and set up stations along the sides of the roads, and they passed the food out to the revolutionary soldiers as they came by.

These women never thought that they would experience freedom for themselves, but they believed that they were winning it for their children and their children’s children. So they sacrificed their all.

When people think of you many years from now, what will they remember? What sort of legacy will you leave behind? Money, property, fun memories, an exemplary lifestyle?

What if you could leave something that would change people’s lives for the very best?

I believe that the most important thing we can leave behind is a legacy of faith – faith in the Sovereign One who is the Blessed Ruler of all things, and faith in His Son Jesus Christ who gave His life so that we could live eternally.

The apostle Paul said this: “Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For His sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with Him” (Philippians 3:8 NIV).

We can spend our days and years on earth pursuing other goals, chasing other visions. But the greatest mission ever proclaimed was given by Jesus when He told us to “go and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19 NIV). What could be more important than this one mission?

I, for one, have committed to share the Gospel with and train one, two, or three men every year, who will in turn go and make disciples of others (2 Timothy 2:2 NIV).

By myself, I may be able to touch only a small number of people’s lives – a small circle within a confined number of years. But as those disciples multiply, this number increases significantly. And through the generations, that number simply explodes.

By God’s grace, that is how a legacy of significance is built.

Recording artist Steve Green sings a powerful song called “Find Us Faithful,” which challenges us to leave a legacy of faith. Here are some of the lyrics (written by Jon Mohr):

After all our hopes and dreams have come and gone
And our children sift through all we’ve left behind
May the clues that they discover and the memories they uncover
Become the light that leads them to the road we must find

Oh may all who come behind us find us faithful
May the fire of our devotion light their way,
May the footprints that we leave lead them to believe
And the lives we live inspire them to obey
Oh may all who come behind us find us faithful!

Remember, God gave you a fingerprint that no one else has so you can leave an imprint that no one else can. A legacy of faith passed from this generation to the next and onward could truly transform our world.