Your Legacy Begins In Your Heart
Our family had a great visit this weekend with another wonderful family. They are kin to my wife, as we Southerners say, but the relationship could easily be described as a life-long friendship. Andrew and “Bobo” (as her grandchildren affectionately call her) now live in her childhood home. It is a beautiful home filled with beautiful memories. It is the kind of home purposefully created to be enjoyed by future generations. Having known Bobo’s mother, I can tell you this woman’s legacy extends far beyond her property and family! However, that is the extent of my focus for this blog.
While we were visiting, more of their family showed up. Their two daughters, a son-in-law, a gang of grandchildren, and one of Bobo’s brothers had all made their way here on this warm Alabama January Sunday afternoon. In a little while most of them had slipped out to the long tree-lined driveway to gather pecans together. Just picture three generations playing together on this half-mile long Pecan grove! What a beautiful picture of “Legacy”. Someone planted all those pecan trees hoping they would be enjoyed by future generations. I believe that our Legacy, like that pecan grove, begins in the heart.
Five Heart Preparing Essentials for Leaving a Legacy
- Recognize how you’ve benefited from those who came before you and be thankful.
- Pray that the Lord will use you to accomplish His purpose.
- Ask God to give you a sense of Purpose, Direction, and Mission.
- Search for and learn to recognize need and respond with compassion and action.
- Intentionally develop your gifts and abilities and commit them to His purpose.
Five simple actions you can take now to provide value for future generations
- Act now as you want to be remembered. Become who you want to be.
- Encourage others now. You don’t have to fill their cup, just pour what’s in yours into theirs.
- Intentionally decrease self now to increase others. Specifically give up something and use that time or money for someone else.
- Give now. Use what you have when you can where you are right now. Develop the generosity habit now.
- Manage your finances now so that you can be crazy generous in later seasons of life.
I have always considered the pecan to be a “legacy tree.” (As a woodworker, I’m kind-of a tree / wood nerd.) Pecans require a lot of work on the front end and provide a lot of value for generations to come… like our Legacy.
- Pecan trees are difficult to cultivate, to say the least. Pecan trees must be grafted around 5 years old and pruned regularly before they will produce fruit sometime around their tenth year. Pecans are also self-incompatible so more than two trees from different cultivars must be in close proximity to be wind-pollinated.
- The wood from the pecan (as with all other trees in the Carya genus) is prized for its unusual combination of strength, hardness, and stiffness not found in most other commercially available woods. It’s wood has been consistently used for things intended to stand up to use over time like tool handles, wheel spokes, golf club shafts, skis, furniture, bows, flooring, and paddles. (Yep, it’s one of the historically preferred woods of punitive correction providers.) Woods of this genus are also prized for their long burning and added flavor when smoking meats.
- Pecan trees live and bear edible fruit for up to 300 years. (Talk about enjoyed by future generations!)
- I love my mother-in-law’s Pecan Pie! I know that has nothing to do with my point… I’m just hoping she’ll read this and remember that I love her Pecan Pie.
You probably know more about Pecan trees now than you ever wanted, but if you’re clamoring for more check out ilovepecans.org.
Question : What work can you put in now that will provide value for future generations?