Saturday, September 2, 2017

September/ harvest /legacy

September has arrived and it is getting a little cooler.  The aspen are sporting yellow leaves even without there having been any frost, as yet.  I love the fall if we can hang on to the colorful leaves for a while and the storms don't forcefully blow them all off. Our Northern Alberta apples have turned red and are extremely tasty.  We can eat them right off the tree, sparing us the purchases from the grocery store.

It is a time to take some stock.  Where has the summer gone;  what did we do with it.  What are the plans for the winter and what are the plans for further down the road;  God willing, there will be time further down the road.  Sometime one thinks that the time is getting short.

Which brings me to a word that I have heard several times lately--it is the word "legacy".  What kind of "legacy" are you leaving?  What kind of "legacy" are you building?  What kind of "legacy" has someone left?  The word jars me.  For one thing it jars me because I am not used to hearing it.  How has it become fashionable? It also jars me because it speaks of accomplishment and pride and reputation.

I have mixed feelings about it.  As a Christian, I don't think in terms of "legacy".  I think in terms of "faithfulness."   Did we do the right thing?  Did we persevere in trials?  Did we honor God's glory before ours?  Did we acknowledge God's grace and help in any or all accomplishments?  Did we wish to serve before wishing to shine?  But also, did we manage to be productive and rule a household well and pass on the faith to succeeding generations, or if we did not have our own household, did we manage to contribute to other people's lives and hopes.  It is in this way that we "build a legacy".

But it seems to me that people apply the word in myriad different ways.  Some seem to mean:  "Since there is no eternal life, let me live on in people's hearts."  Some seem to mean:  "Let me be a progressive activist, so I can think that I have helped change the world for better (by destroying bourgeois values of family, etc.)".  Some mean:  "Let me rise in my profession and career, amass a little fortune, and have something to show for myself."  Some of these things have some value.  (Some not.)   However, in a strictly atheistic view, it is hard to determine any meaning or value in anything, at all, theoretically speaking.  In actual fact, no one can live without meaning.  So what is the meaning behind the word "legacy" for them?  It is a good question.  We should ask them about it when they use the word "legacy."

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