On Saturday, I attended the memorial service for a loved one. I chatted with relatives as we waited for the service to begin. After a while, my sister called me over, with a look of concern.
I asked what was wrong, thinking something had happened to another family member. She shared that there was an issue with the minister performing the Eulogy, and she would need me to perform it if he didn’t arrive in time.
I had only done one other Eulogy in my life. I spent days preparing for it and was still a nervous wreck leading up to the graveside service. It was an honor to be asked by my dear friend and to provide love and support in her time of deep grief, and I’m thankful for God’s grace that helped me minister that day.
But this was different. I was being put on the spot with no preparation. What was I supposed to say? My sister assured me just to direct my words of comfort to those in attendance and to offer Christ.
In that moment I felt so sheepish. I always ask God for opportunities to encourage and minister to others, and just that morning in my prayer time, I asked Him to help me fulfill any assignments He had for me that day.
I would have never guessed that performing a Eulogy would have been my assignment, but I knew I wanted to be available and ready to complete any mission that I was capable of fulfilling.
As the service proceeded, I went over in my mind what I wanted to share about my memories of my dear cousin, and how he spent years working in the mental health field, impacting so many precious lives that some may deem less important.
I watched his heartbroken widow sit through the service, as we honored his memory. Lord, what can I say to bring comfort and peace to her and everyone else in this most difficult time?
We expediently went through the program, and I smiled as loved ones shared memories. When it was time for the Eulogy, the minister had showed up, and proceeded to share a spirit-filled message of comfort with the mourners.
I felt a twinge of disappointment that I couldn’t share my own message of hope with my family and friends, and I know God didn’t give me the message to keep to myself, so I decided to share the words of encouragement here instead. Here is my condensed version of what I planned to share that day…
We are upon the last month of not only this year, but this decade. We each were created for a purpose. Some of you may have woken up this morning and just went through your regular routine, without a real plan or purpose for the day. But what about your goals for tomorrow? Or next week?
What plans are you making for your future? What purpose are you working towards? You may just be taking each day as it comes, dealing with life’s challenges as they hit you, living day by day with no clear direction. But that’s not what you were created to do.
No one here is an accident or mistake. Jeremiah 29:11 reminds us that God has a special plan, which is intended to bless and not harm us, as He has an individualized future full of hope specifically designed for each of us.
In order to discover our purpose and be in line for the future specially created for us, we MUST be connected to our Creator. There’s no way we’ll know what we are supposed to be doing in this life, if we are not in a relationship with the One who designed life and gave it to us.
And when the time comes for each of us to close our eyes for the last time on earth, our family and friends will come together to remember and celebrate our lives. We want them to share and reflect on the people we loved, the good deeds we’ve completed, and the purpose and impact our life had on them, and others in our communities.
People are often remembered for having a favorite hobby or known for something unique. Whatever it is that we are celebrated for, our goal should be to live a life of purpose. When it is time for our Eulogy, let’s have lived a life that others will commemorate for the influence that we had on them and how we impacted their future. What a great legacy to leave here on earth.
And when we wake up to our Savior and Lord, we will hear “Well done, thy good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of the Lord.”
And that, my friend, will be a life well lived.
Reflect on your life as we approach the end of this year and decade. Are you going through the motions each day, or are your days filled with goal-planning directed to achieving specific purposes and plans that you are working toward?