By Gerry Wakeland
Today the AFBC family will say a final farewell to Ollie Allred. For those who knew Ollie, they know that he loved God, his wife Patty, his family, and his church. He loved his friends.
Ollie Allred was a man with a servant’s heart. He served long and well. And we can be assured that when he entered his heavenly home last week, he heard the words, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
In the words of Pastor Kevin Linthicum, Ollie finished well. And he left a legacy not just for his own family, but for his church family and the many others who were a part of Ollie’s life.
What is a legacy? Webster defines legacy as anything handed down from the past. Often, we think of that as money or material possessions. But the Bible looks at it quite differently.
Everything we need to know about passing on a Godly legacy is found in Scripture. The Bible is as valid for us now as it was for all the generations before us.
God spoke these words to Moses, admonishing him to instruct the people.
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. Deuteronomy 6:5-7 (NKJV)
Teaching our children, the Word of God is a legacy. It’s a legacy that will last long after we are gone.
Proverbs 13:22 tells us, “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children.” (NKJV)
This verse keeps our life goals, our vision and our legacy front and center when we’re choosing how to use our money today. When we weigh what we want now against what we really want later, we realize how temporary satisfaction pales in comparison to a legacy of purpose and generational fulfillment.
An inheritance is not limited to money. It also includes godly character qualities like integrity and trustworthiness. Combining a financial inheritance with wisdom and godliness ensures that the next generation will also manage God’s blessings God’s way for God’s glory long after I’ve graduated to heaven.
When I think of men like Ollie Allred I think of those godly character qualities. It is imperative in these perilous times that we are serious about modeling these character traits for our children and our children’s children. But it doesn’t stop there. Every day we have the opportunity to model those same traits for others. Whether at work, school or play.
Every day we have the opportunity to build people up when the world is trying to tear them down. We can do a kind deed that will go on and on after we are gone. We can lend a helping hand without expecting anything in return. This is the legacy left by Ollie Allred.
The truth is this: You will pass on something to your children and grandchildren…the question is, what?
The legacy you leave is the life you lead.