A Legacy of Loving God Completely – Part II

Our stewardship focus this year is on A Living Legacy. In its basic meaning, a legacy can be seen as what we leave behind for the next generation. Our legacies can be money, property, life lessons, examples of living, ways of communicating grace. The important thing to understand is that we are always leaving behind a legacy; either a bad one or a good one. Last week we examined how loving God with our whole heart, mind, soul, and body can leave behind “A Living Legacy” – one that breathes life into people long after we have gone.

This week I would like to take a look at how money affects our legacy. There seems to be no denying the immense influence that money has in our lives. So much of who we are (despite our own desires) is in fact “caught up in” or “revolves around” money. From our self-esteem (which usually is centered around what kind of possessions we have or how our money can make us look) to our identity being rooted in how successful our careers are (how much money we are making); money shapes us. From our spending habits to the way people are enslaved by the economics of systemic poverty – money is power.

But this power to shape our lives and thus our legacies is not wholly evil. Money is powerful, but it need not dictate to us who we are or how it will influence us. Money you see can play a pivotal role in establishing “A Living Legacy”. This happens when we see our financial resources not as a means to self-fulfillment but rather as a tool to be used by God to establish a legacy of breathing life into the lives of others.

Our society and our religious practices have sold us a lie. They have convinced us that our wealth (in all its forms) is simply a reward from God for good behavior. Something to be used to make our lives easier and more pleasurable. But once we accept that maybe our wealth is a tool to be used by God to bring life into other people’s lives than two things happen 1) the power of money to enslave our lives dissipates and 2) our very lives become a legacy that God will establish. Our perspective on life, people, circumstances, and relationships changes with this shift in our world view. How we live actually changes into something greater than we could ever have imagined or established on our own. A Living Legacy is born!

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