Singing at funerals is part of being in a singing ministry.  It is not my favorite part, but it is something that my family and I are always honored to be asked to do.  I am often moved to tears by the expressions of grief that I see at the funerals we attend.

Yesterday, however, I was moved to tears for a different reason as I sat through the funeral of a dear woman.  She had left a beautiful legacy of love and faith.  I was homesick for the Heaven she had just entered and challenged by the testimony she had left behind.  Was I a woman who would leave such a legacy?  Did I love well?  Did I live well?  Would I be missed once I was gone?

"Father, please let me become a woman who leaves a legacy like this.  Let me be a woman who points to You continually.  Let me be a woman who loves and is loved, no matter how quirky I have to be, no matter how old I get," I prayed silently as the funeral services ended.

A few hours later, I was back at the funeral home for the second time in order to support another grieving family.  Before the night was over, I was sitting in the floor with a precious 6-year-old, discussing Frozen like it was the most crucial thing to living since the invention of electricity.  We giggled and bonded over favorite scenes, characters, and songs.  We even discovered that our favorite colors are the same!  She reassured me that 21 wasn't too old and that I was still a kid.  She hugged me and I waved goodbye as I tried to awaken these bones so that I could stand again among the adults.

I left the funeral home and instantly became self-conscious.  What kind of 21-year-old sits in the floor at a viewing?  When are you ever going to grow up?  Do you think a Proverbs 31 woman would act that way?  No dignity, no respect, no maturity.  You have a long way to go before you become a memorable, graceful woman with a legacy to leave.  You must have looked like a fool.

It wasn't until I was home, sitting in my pajamas, avoiding packing, that I remembered my little prayer earlier in the day.  To love and be loved, no matter how quirky I had to be, no matter how old I became.

To sit in the floor with a 6-year-old and treasure the excitement in her eyes.

To cradle her zealous heart in my hands, even for a few moments, and offer my own undivided attention in return.

To be a 21-year-old loving what a 6-year-old loved so that I could love better.

I wanted to leave a legacy.  What I never realized until this moment is that I am already leaving one.

And so are you.  Every moment that we invest in others is a footprint that we are leaving behind.  That little girl may grow up and not remember that night.  I may not remember it in a month or so.  But what we discussed didn't matter.  I cared enough to look like a fool for her happiness, to meet her where she was so that I could brighten her day.

I cared.  And I proved it.

That's a legacy that I don't mind leaving.

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