Legacy and Character

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“Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.” 


What is your Legacy—your Living Legacy—your present story that others know you to be today?

I am working on a character that I hope to use in my future work as a storyteller. I am starting with her legacy first—working from the end to the beginning of her life.  This is no small task. And yet, it’s profoundly moving and she’s fictional!

The process brought back the memory of listening to a wise woman tell of how she was intently working everyday on “the old woman” she will become.

Isn’t that a huge thought?  That statement kind of took my breath away and it was, at the same time, profoundly true.  We are all working on the old man or old woman we will be, whether we are conscious of it or completely unaware of it.

This woman was working backwards to forwards on her life, if that makes sense.

I have been writing stories for more than 25 years with the intention of prodding my listeners to ponder their every-single-day-living legacy. I want to reflect back to them “…it’s your story that really counts.”

There are times when I know I hit the mark as I have with the story, “A Song For The Darkness.” from my book and CD project, “Step Inside… Where Stories Come to Life”.  You can go listen to it here on my website: http://rightsideupstories.com/the-ear/

The character, Aunt Lily, in my story, possessed the quality of a woman with a heart after God.  The story says, “Aunt Lily loved God, people, and her dogs.  It was that simple.” She was grateful for life and breath. She lived in joy. Small things were big things. And she had an “Upstairs Basement”—a place of cataloguing her stories and treasures.  Even in her passing, her profound legacy reached into her niece’s life changing the way she would live her own life.

It’s true. Too often we are working on our reputation rather than our character.  We spend too many moments worrying about wrinkles instead of forgiving others.  Or obsessing in our work place instead of playing a game of Uno or tetherball with a child.  Or forwarding on a funny email when a phone call or a letter would make all the difference in a relationship.  Or we let others believe we are super-holy when we are just as needy for God’s love as they are.

Today, maybe for a few moments—the moments it takes to listen to a story—ponder your living legacy. I know I will as I am spending the day with my daughter doing something “completely off the page”!  And I know it will be incredible… and a bit of my Old Lady Melea Brock will become more real.

Your Story Matters…


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