Wednesday, 9 November 2011
A tribute to lives well lived
I've just come home from a funeral of a woman I never knew personally, but I know and adore her mother and son-in-law and have been a youth leader and friend to her grandkids.
As I sat and listened to the story of her life, I heard one thing repeated.
She didn't waste her life worrying.
She didn't let hard times get in her way of living the life she was purposed for. Not her house burning down, not her beloved suffering a stroke and requiring lengthy rehabilitation nor a incredibly courageous two and a half year battle with cancer could come between her and her unwavering faith or her valuable time spent with her family.
Through the pain and sickness that comes with chemo and the battle to have as much time on earth as she could, she always had time for her family.
She lived for them. She set them up for success. She showed them that manners was important, that grace was a given and that honest good morals and values were the key to a good life.
I never met this woman. Yet I am so INSPIRED.
Last week I also went to our mate's dad's funeral. His story was that of a man of faith who lived for his family also. He made sacrifices along the way so that his family could be set on the path to a successful life and as a result, generations of his family will remember him as a kind, generous, loving man who never compromised himself or his faith but always put his family first. I am INSPIRED.
Last year, I went to the funeral of my darling friend's mum who's life story repeated 'just get on with it'. Even in the face of her husbands spinal injury and wheelchair confinement, she 'just got on with it'. Even when she developed Alzheimers, she 'just got on with it' and loved her family unfailingly til the end. I am INSPIRED.
It's sounds so cliched, but each funeral really was a celebration. Each a celebration of a beautiful life, well lived, well loved and of a person who knew and fulfilled their life's purpose.
Each of these people also shared a common thread. Each were not of my generation. Each I never knew personally. But each have left a mark on my heart and have set an example I hope to follow.
I can see their beauty, their strength and their character in the incredible human beings they brought into this world and that I am blessed enough to call friends.
Each have shown me an example of what family is and the importance of setting my children up for success.
Never underestimate the impact your life has on others. When you don't allow the hard stuff to hold you back and you live a life of purpose, your character shines through further than you will ever truly know.
LIVE your life.
In memory of and with thanks to Val, David & Joan.