Several weeks ago, our Wednesday evening service was centered around a prayer labyrinth. Don’t get all hung up on the word “labyrinth.” We just followed some taped lines in our chapel to different “stations”. At each station we focused on a particular aspect of prayer. Every station, every thought centered around our relationship with Jesus. Is He the center of my praise, have I properly forgiven those in my life who have hurt me so that the name of Jesus is magnified; is the person inside of me the same as the person I show the world about who Jesus is, or am I doing a really good job of faking it? Lots of opportunity to examine my heart and motives.
As I was nearing the end of the prayer time, I came to Station 11. It was entitled “Impression.” After taking off my shoes and leaving my footprints in a box of sand, I then was asked the following questions… “What will be left of me when I’ve left? What traces will I leave? Will the evidence be compelling? What will the surviving witnesses say? Will their world be better because of what I did in my present? What will history say of me when I am history, too?”
Okay, now, before you go off on how that is so “me-centered,” let me tell you that I know that it could very easily become that way. If we are honest, don’t we all wonder from time to time if our lives have made any difference at all in the lives of those in our world? Is anything we have done going to leave positive results for them? I certainly wonder. Maybe it’s a girl thing. I don’t think so, though. I would venture to guess that the reason many men work so hard is so that when they are gone, their world can talk about what a wonderful provider he was; how great a guy! Yep, that evening could have easily become an “all about me” exercise.
What happened–for me, at least–was that I was struck motionless with the notion that I might actually leave this world and not have left a single “trace” of the Savior I serve in my wake.
I wrote a poem once that went like this:
Someday my life will be no more
And I wonder
Will anyone knock on my door
To mourn my passing?
More than that… will any impression of the Savior I served be left from my life? Will anyone be able to say they knew Jesus better because of my witness? I’m quite aware that my life is only a small ripple and that others’ lives make huge waves with their witness. I don’t need to have my name up in lights or be known world-wide; I simply do not wish to meet Jesus with empty hands. I’m not looking for accolades here–not my intention at all. This is just the way I want to begin and continue the year 2012…contemplating ways to make sure Jesus is known and God is praised because of the way I live my life. The older I get and the more I learn, the more convinced I become of this truth–that has always been there, but just lately truly taking root in my life–it really is all about Him.
This morning’s sermon was from Luke 5:1-11. My husband titled it “Getting Back to Basics.” The main points of the sermon were these: Our first responsibility as Christians is to glorify God. Our second responsibility is to become fishers of men. Jesus told Peter, Andrew, James and John, “…from now on you will be catching men.” This is what He has called us to do.
My desire, my prayer is that 2012 will be the year of leaving HIS “impression” on the lives of those in my world and catching lots of “fish.”