Have you ever heard the saying, “You can’t see the forest for the trees”? It’s when you get so deep into the details of your circumstances that you lose your perspective. When you are worried and stressed about so many little things that you lose the vision of your role, your purpose, or your meaning in life. The good news is…you don’t have to live your life that way! If you can keep your perspective through the ups and downs of life, you can intentionally leave an incredible legacy to your children.
But that’s easier said than done, right? We all need a little encouragement now and then.
Keeping a visual reminder in front of you can be a great help. That’s why I’ve created some free resources to help all of us live more intentionally. (You can find the free resources at the bottom of this post!)
In this blog post, I want to share with you 6 ways to keep your perspective so that you can leave the kind of legacy that comes from a life well-lived. Your influence has the potential to bless others even through your children.
If you are anything like me, you will need to be very intentional about your legacy. This will require being able to see all of life in the right perspective day after day.
When should you start thinking about this?
Consider this: your children will carry the memory of these days into their old age. They will remember what life was like at home during their growing-up years and what Mom was all about. Yikes! What a potentially scary thought! Because let’s face it, we moms are far from perfect!
So how do you start now to create a legacy so that, in time, your children will rise up and call you blessed?
6 WAYS TO LEAVE A GREAT LEGACY TO YOUR CHILDREN
1. Read God’s Word and pray daily.
Friend, I know you have heard this before, and perhaps you already do it to a certain extent.
However, it took a journey through breast cancer 13 years ago for me to understand just how important this really is.
There simply is nothing better for you than to have God’s perspective as your own. Don’t wait until you experience a huge trial in your life. Start doing this now! You will not regret it.
Do yourself (and your family) a favor. Feed your heart, mind, and soul with the truth of God’s Word every single day. Nothing will help you keep the right perspective better than this.
And be sure of this: your children will take notice.
When they are grown with children of their own, they will say, “My mom read her Bible every day, and then, she would rise up from her place and go live it.” There is your legacy right there!
2. Live a life of service, compassion, and love to others.
Nothing speaks louder about our faith than sincere and humble service to others. It translates well to loving your neighbor as yourself. It is being a doer of the Word and not a hearer only. And remember, your children are watching this too.
3. Stay away from drama and gossip.
You should either run from this or redirect the conversation. This is one of the biggest reasons a person can lose perspective and not be able to see the forest for the trees. We’ve all seen this happen even in churches and Christian homeschool groups. It goes without saying that you should definitely not be starting drama or gossip, but don’t allow yourself to get pulled into the mud by someone else either.
Besides, it’s not God’s will for you.
And it’s bad for your health! (Read: STRESSFUL)
Your children may question your faith if they are seeing you in a continual pattern of engaging in drama and gossip. And you do not want to go there. This has caused many a young person to turn away from the faith.
4. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude.
Practicing the habit of a thankful heart will change your life and the lives of those close to you. The joy it will produce in you will be contagious!
5. Keep things simple and choose intentionally.
Don’t be persuaded by what the culture is telling you to do. Your child does not necessarily “need” to be in soccer, t-ball, dance, etc. If you and your husband decide to put your child in all of these, of course that is fine, but don’t do it out of fear or because everyone else is doing it. This also goes for church activities. Choose intentionally, not out of fear.
6. Start this day forward with the end in mind.
Try this little exercise. Go get a pen and a notebook. (Or download the Intentional Legacy Worksheet from the resource library at the bottom of this post). Sit somewhere quiet where you will not be distracted. Now I want you to fast forward in your mind to the days when your children are grown up or gone off to college. I want you to search deep within your heart and imagine how you would answer this question:
What do you want your children’s memories of you to be after they have grown up and moved away?
- Step 1: Write down at least 3-4 things that you would like your children to tell others about you when they are grown. Leave a few lines of space between each one for the next step. Take your time with this!
- Step 2: In the spaces under each item you listed above, write down 1 action you can start doing this week. What can you start doing on a regular basis that will help you to create those memories for your children?
- Step 3: Keep this list in a place where you can refer to it often. Try sticking it inside your Bible, your journal, or on your bedside table. Right before bed is a good time to reflect on your list. Being reminded of what’s important is a good thing and something we all need.
- Step 4: Begin to include this topic in your regular prayer time. Humbly ask the Lord to give you His perspective and to guide you in leaving a legacy that honors Him.
DOWNLOAD YOUR INTENTIONAL LEGACY WORKSHEET AND BOOKMARK TO HELP YOU GET STARTED!
Get the password for the library with my legacy worksheet and bookmark here by filling out this form:
Start this day fresh with an intentional plan to read God’s Word daily, live a life of service, stay away from drama and gossip, cultivate an attitude of gratitude, keep things simple and intentional, and live with the end in mind.
I hope that by applying these strategies to your life, you will be able to stay above the trees so you can maintain the vision to always see the forest. You will be able to keep the right perspective in all of life and leave an incredible legacy to your children. One that you can smile upon when you breathe your last breath. In the end, they will rise up and call you blessed.
Related: 10 Steps to a Stress-Free Morning Routine
YOUR TURN: What struggles in your life threaten your perspective? What ways have you found to help you keep your perspective and be intentional about the life your children see in you? Share your insights in the comments below!
God’s blessings to you,