At the end of our days and after we are gone will we have made a difference on anyone or anything? Has my life mattered to anyone and what was my impact on this world?
Early on I had the thought that the only thing I could really leave is my name and integrity. When someone saw my name on something I did they would know it was done to the best of my ability and would not have to worry about the quality of it.
I took that mentality into the workplace, I think back to at least one job where we had to put our initials on the packaging slip to show who inspected and did quality control on that box. To me those initials had to mean I had done everything to make sure that package was perfect to send off to the customer. And, I wanted my team to know that they could count on it being right just knowing I had signed off on it.
I mean at the end of the day people might remember your face but it’s your name that identifies you. In my case I share my name with three others. You see I was named after my grandfather which makes me the third Frank Deardurff in my family. My Mom always said my name sounded important having the third at the end and I took pride in that.
Sadly, I didn’t have the opportunity to really know the two people I was named after for varying circumstances but I feel it’s my part to make sure that name is left with integrity. At least the one that ends in “the third” LOL.
A quote that comes to mind is:
“A good name is better than fine perfume, and the day of death better than the day of birth.”Ecclesiastes 7:1
When you come into this world we are a new creation. We’re announced to the world and life moves on. It’s as we approach the end of our days we pause and think “has my life mattered to anyone?”
I’m by no means at the end of my days but it doesn’t hurt to stop and think “am I making a difference in this world?” I mean I don’t expect some shrine or monument to be constructed but I hope I’ve helped someone along the way to make this world a little better than I found it.
In the Bible quote above “A good name is better than fine perfume” to me means that your name will last a lot longer than a bottle of perfume. While the perfume has a fragrance for a short time we can only remember the scent and associate it to one thing like it smelled of a certain flower or place, But sometimes it reminds us of a person. You may remember your grandma’s favorite perfume, your grandfather’s cologne and drift back to a memory of them.
Your name evokes a lot more thought and memories. How did that person make me feel, or oh I remember that person helped me when I was in need or got me out of a jam when nobody else would.
The second part of that quote can be a little confusing. “…the day of death is better than the day of birth”. When we are first born we’re fresh and new and have everything to learn. And while the day of death can be sorrowful to those around us we hope it’s also filled with good memories.
To the believer of faith, the day of death can be understood in a few different ways which sheds more light to this verse. The day of death may be the day we find salvation and our old self has died and we become a new creation in Christ. And we are born again. We died and were made brand new or born again. The day of death can also mean our days here on this earth before we ascend into heaven which is for a believer what we look forward to when our time comes.
While I still hope my art, photos, teaching, and writing impacts people, my hope is that I’ve shared the love of Jesus and that they too would want to learn and know him more.