Several years ago, I wrote a small book titled, Thoughts to Leave Behind. It was a compilation of small essays I wanted to leave behind for my church staff who would assume the leadership role of our church once I transitioned away from pastoring to a ministry of writing and speaking. After compiling those thoughts, the Lord said, “Make it a book.”
Every life will leave behind a record of values. We either write about them, preach them, or share them through the oral tradition of our families and friends. Surveying those values well before the end of our lives allows us to examine the spiritual footprint we will leave behind and help us make any final adjustments as we take our final lap.
As a young pastor, my most impactful gatherings were not the large meetings where some note-worthy preacher delivered a well-crafted sermon. It was the small, speaker-on-a-stool-without-notes kind of presentation that impacted me the most. These times were the “thoughts to leave behind” kind of moments filled with Spirit-led journeys into powerful rabbit holes of revelation and insight that revealed truths and concepts that have stayed with me for the ensuing decades.
This is not something for just the visible talking heads in the Church or people in positions of visible influence. It’s for all of us. Each life has a contribution that will be left behind.
Oswald Chambers is known for his profound devotional, My Utmost for His Highest. The book was a compilation of short devotionals he gave while still a relatively unknown instructor at The Bible Training College in London, England. His wife took shorthand notes of his teaching that would later become the book.
I enjoy reading the thoughts and values of people from all walks of life that will be left behind for future generations. Many of those contributions align with my list, but some have made me consider other ways of living this life of faith. The contributions and recollections of others help all of us become more and believe more. That’s why it’s important to leave them behind.
Yes, in the same genre, I recommend the book “Eagle People Journal” by Ghostdancer Calvin Shadley sandycathcart.com published in So. Oregon.