I recently read of a high school teacher’s death in the comments section under a photo in Facebook. He was a music teacher, and I knew of him even though I never played an instrument. I wondered about him and looked up his name online. I found a small paragraph about him from the funeral home’s website. His life was all about music, and whether or not he was a believer, I have no doubt God put that beautiful desire and skill in his heart. This teacher continued his own studies after kids he taught had graduated. He even played on stage with famous names.
Reading about his life made me think long on legacy and influence.
2 Kings 15-16 chronicles leaders.
Uzziah son of Amaziah began to rule over Judah in the twenty-seventh year of the reign of King Jeroboam II of Israel. 2 He was sixteen years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-two years. His mother was Jecoliah from Jerusalem.
3 He did what was pleasing in the Lord’s sight, just as his father, Amaziah, had done. 4 But he did not destroy the pagan shrines, and the people still offered sacrifices and burned incense there. 5 The Lord struck the king with leprosy, which lasted until the day he died. He lived in isolation in a separate house. The king’s son Jotham was put in charge of the royal palace, and he governed the people of the land. 2 Kings 15:1-5, NLT.
13 Shallum son of Jabesh began to rule over Israel in the thirty-ninth year of King Uzziah’s reign in Judah. Shallum reigned in Samaria only one month. 14 Then Menahem son of Gadi went to Samaria from Tirzah and assassinated him, and he became the next king.
16 At that time Menahem destroyed the town of Tappuah and all the surrounding countryside as far as Tirzah, because its citizens refused to surrender the town. He killed the entire population and ripped open the pregnant women.
17 Menahem son of Gadi began to rule over Israel in the thirty-ninth year of King Uzziah’s reign in Judah. He reigned in Samaria ten years. 18 But Menahem did what was evil in the Lord’s sight. During his entire reign, he refused to turn from the sins that Jeroboam son of Nebat had led Israel to commit. 2 Kings 15:13-18, NLT.
How humbling that lifetimes and legacy can be summarized in a few lines.
18 In the morning, as Jesus was returning to Jerusalem, he was hungry, 19 and he noticed a fig tree beside the road. He went over to see if there were any figs, but there were only leaves. Then he said to it, “May you never bear fruit again!” And immediately the fig tree withered up. Matthew 21:18-19, NLT.
The fig tree gave the impression of health and fullness, but it produced no fruit.
Lord, help me to prepare my thoughts and heart for the tasks ahead of me. I need you every minute of the day. You have wired me to do certain things–and I pray that I do them wholeheartedly for you.