Guest Post by Grammy Nominated, Dove Award Winning Music Producer, studio singer and songwriter – Chance Scoggins
Last week, I had a 3-hour layover in the Denver airport. After I grabbed some lunch, I settled in at my gate to catch up on some email. As I looked down at my computer, I saw a folded sheet of paper on the floor underneath my chair. At first, I ignored it. But each time I looked back down, there it was again, staring at me. I saw two columns written in small, blocky handwriting, but I couldn’t make out the words. Eventually, curiosity got the best of me and I bent down to pick it up.
I was shocked and made better by what I read.
The column on the left was a To-Do List. Each task had been crossed off, except for the last.
Write thank you notes. Call florist. Pack suit.
Get music to someone.
On the right, in capital letters and underlined were the words, JOHN’S LEGACY. Beneath it, a few bullet points.
– Family man
– Good friend (First to help)
– Hard worker
– Strong faith
– Baseball Coach (“Finish well, boys!”)
I soon realized it was an outline for a funeral service. The person who wrote it was probably giving the eulogy.
Holding the summary of his life in my hand, I suddenly felt protective over John as if the list were about me or someone I love. I was insulted. The thought of an entire life being reduced to so few words made my stomach turn. And these non-descript, common phrases like “family man” and “hard worker” didn’t seem dignified enough to honor a life well-lived. Surely there was more to him. There must be a better way to describe him than “good friend” or “Coach”.
Then I heard from somewhere inside of me –
Not if you’re a player on his team.
Not if you’re the friend he helped when you needed him most.
At first glance, it seemed like the list could have described lots of men. But it didn’t. It describedJohn.
…who loved his family more than anything else in the world.
…who was the first in line to help someone in need.
…whose work ethic set the standard, encouraging everyone around him to do more – and do it all the way.
…whose faith was a beacon.
John…who taught his players how to finish well.
One of my favorite quotes is from Harold Kushner. It says, “Our souls are not hungry for fame, comfort, wealth, or power. Our souls are hungry for meaning, for the sense that we have figured out how to live so that our lives matter, so that the world will be at least a little bit different for our having passed through it.”
I used to think a legacy was built of grand moments and great accomplishments. And when I considered all the forgotten history behind us, it seemed it was only reserved for those who shaped the world in profound ways.
But now I see the truth.
We’re all shaping the world profoundly – in ways we can see and ways we can’t begin to imagine. We don’t define our legacy in one moment of glory. We build it every day – through our most daring acts and even what we might consider to be mundane.
Legacy isn’t about an ultimate gift you’ll someday give the world. It’s about everything you give the world. It won’t be written about you someday in the future. You’re writing it now.
That’s why it matters that you got out of bed this morning,
And that you give your best to the work of your hands.
That’s why it matters when you’re kind to a stranger,
And quick to help a friend,
That you love well.
John got it right. In the end, it’s not about a pile of cash, a fat rolodex or your picture on a wall. It’s about changing your corner of the world…and hopefully teaching someone how to finish well in the process.
Your fingerprints are all over the world around you – offering perspective that only you can, healing hurts that only you can, shaping the future as only you can.
Sounds like a legacy to be proud of to me.
– Chance Scoggins
Although Chance is a Grammy Nominated, Dove Award Winning Music Producer, studio singer and songwriter … and those are great things to describe what a person has done/does and accomplished- Chance wants people to know:
“I want to do and be more than I am.
I laugh easily and love deeply.
I’m not afraid to be vulnerable or transparent, in hopes that my success and defeats will help someone else.
I notice things most people overlook.
I believe we’re here for something unique and specific, not just an ultimate calling, but a daily something to do.
I’m on the lookout for tomorrow.
My truest passion is cultivating potential in others, to help them become who they were created to be.
I believe that’s why I’m here.” – Chance Scoggins
Visit Chance’s website and let yourself sink into his writing. I bet you can’t read just one post at a time! Get ready to be encouraged!