Thursday, October 6, 2011


Last year I was at a yard sale with tables full of children's clothes. As I was looking through what they had, I overheard the homeowner's mother telling a shopper, "My daughter-in-law passed away two years ago. She worked all the time because it was always really important to afford cute clothes for her kids."

I turned around to see the woman smiling as she said these words. I thought she was saying them with sadness, but when I saw her face I realized she'd spoken them with a great sense of pride and joy.

I cringed inside. Now, I truly mean no dishonor to a woman who has passed on or to her family, but to be honest, I could not possibly care less if anyone says of me when I die that it was super important to me to have my kids well-dressed, or that I spent a lot of time ensuring it would be so. Sure, it's fun to get kids dressed up. But boy, do I ever hope other things than that spring to mind when my life is summarized in words.

But it got me thinking--what WILL people say of me when I die? What will they say mattered to me? How will they say I spent my time? What will they say burdened me? Broke my heart? Brought me joy?

When I'm remembered, will I be connected with trivial things? Maybe. Gosh, I hope not. But yes--maybe.

I wondered--If the people who know me best are to one day speak to my life and have to capture my life in only a few sentences, what will be said?

I'd be most interested in what Justin, my kids, my family, and my closest friends would have to say. I wish I could hear their unfiltered perceptions of what they perceived to matter to me. And it's not because I think it would all be glowing. It wouldn't! Those closest to me know that, really, truly, the only good in me is God within me, willing me to act according to His good purposes. Apart from His love and mercy, I am one broken girl.

There's just something in me that wishes I could hear it all now, when there's still time to change some things.

If there was time I was spending on something unimportant, I'd want to hear it. And stop.

If there were things I was called to do but never got around to it, I'd want to hear it. And start.

If my words weren't loving enough, I'd want to hear it. And change them.

If my actions didn't line up with what I said was true, I'd want to hear it. And get busy living like I say I believe.

If there were wrongs I didn't make right, I'd want to hear it. And right them.

If my priorities were out of whack, I'd want to hear it. And reevaluate them.

My Grandpa Tom died a year ago today. And I still say that he lived on purpose with his eyes on Heaven more than almost anyone else I've ever known. Do I say it to be nice--even respectful? No. I say it because of all the things I could say about him, it's the thing that jumps out the most about him as the mark of his life. So to sum up the 85-year life span of my grandfather in a nutshell, he loved Jesus and knew he was just passing through this life on his way home to be with Him.

It doesn't matter to me if anyone ever says I dressed cute (Uh, they won't, I promise!) or that I was brilliant or successful (Again, they won't--my SAT score would convince you). I hope I'm remembered to be a loving wife and a mom who cared desperately about leaving a legacy. And in time, give it maybe 50 years after I'm gone, my name won't be remembered anyway. And I'm okay with that. I want this life I've been given to be about lifting up His name. And I hope the Kingdom of God will be advanced in small part through the life He gave me.

When the music fades into the past
When my days of life are through
What will be remembered from where I've come
When all is said and done?

Will they say I loved my family,
That I was a faithful friend?
That I lived to tell of God's own Son
When all is said and done?

Of how I longed to see the hour
When I would hear that trumpet sound
And rise to see my Savior's face,
See Him smile and say, "Well done."

You can forget my name
and the songs I've sung

Every rhyme and every tune
But remember the truth of Jesus' love
When all is said and done.

-GEOFF MOORE - "When All is Said and Done"

* Would you want to pre-hear what will one day be said about you? If you could hear people's unfiltered perceptions of what they believe mattered to you in your life, do you think it would change anything about the way you live?

Teach us to number our days aright,
that we might gain a heart of wisdom.
May the favor of the LORD our God
rest upon us;
establish the work of our hands for us,
yes, establish the work of our hands.

Psalm 90:12, 17



  1. Oooooh! I had forgotten about that song- LOVE IT!

    LOVE YOU, Thea....and you do dress cute!

  2. love this! great thoughts Thea.