Good Living | What Will They Say About You?

| July 2, 2014

What-Will-They-Say-about-YouEDITORIAL – Let me begin by asking you a question that, while I realize it may be a bit uncomfortable to answer, I believe is something you should give some thought to. So here goes. When you come to the end of your life and an obituary is written about you, what will be said?

Your honest answer to that question will tell you a lot about how you’ve lived your life thus far. The good news is this. If you’re not happy with your answer to that question, it’s not to late to correct it. Don’t believe me? Read on.

Allow me to tell you the story of Alfred Nobel, who among other things, was the inventor of dynamite. Although he actually intended the explosive he created to be used for peaceful purposes, that’s not how others saw it. Not by a long shot.

In fact, when his brother died in an explosion, a French newspaper erroneously reported that it was he who had died. In their obituary of him, they excoriated him, calling him the “merchant of death.” Essentially, they said good riddance! Although it was painful for him to read, this gave him a rare chance to see what others thought of him. And, he didn’t like it. At all.

From that day forward, he dedicated himself to changing that perception and worked hard to make a true difference in the world. This lead to his bequeathing millions of dollars upon his death for the creation of what would become the Nobel Peace Prize; the award he is mainly known for today. Interesting, huh?

While we may not have the same resources as Nobel, and our lives might be nothing like his, I believe we can still all learn a valuable lesson from his example.

The truth is, we all, at some point, will face our ultimate end (at least in this place), and how we are remembered is largely due to what we are in the here and now.

Ultimately, our legacy is very much in our own hands.

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28 Comments on "Good Living | What Will They Say About You?"

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  1. Papi says:

    I’m really not concerned with what society will say about me the day I pass on to a higher level, some will say great things, some will say good things and some will say bad thing. What concerns me is what Jesus Christ will say about me when I come in front of GOD Almighty, Amen!!!

  2. Wally says:

    Once again you have brought me into a world of thought. I was happy with my initial feelings, but I am far from where I believe I can be. Thanks

  3. Cara Tomlinson says:

    How timely this is today my friend….I can only hope I have lived in such a way I will be remembered warmly, as a good person, friend, mama, daughter.

  4. Dyana Ellis says:

    I suspect that the older we get, the more we all think about the “footprint” we will leave behind. Thanks for sharing Nobel’s experience: that’s concrete proof that it’s not too late to make a more favorable impression (pardon the pun) and a deeper impact on the world we will leave behind.

  5. Alla says:

    I am not concern whatsoever what people say about me now why should I be concern what they will say when I will pass…I live my life not harming intentionally anyone; cannot help if someone feels offended by my way of living or thinking though…I live my life to the best of my ability to manage it without trying to get on the top of people and having best intentions in mind and heart…If someone does not like it, I let them be and mind my own business…You cannot please everyone and doesn’t matter how good or mindful you are someone might not like you…Need to be yourself. That’s it.

  6. Wow, great story about Alfred Nobel, Jay! Thanks so much for sharing 🙂

  7. Melissa says:

    Hopefully, that she cared too much for others, rather than her own welfare. Great article!

  8. Always give thought to your own legacy. Maybe it is with family, or friends. Maybe it was your own. Stand yourself in the funeral parlor, and pretend you wrote the eulogy. Is this what you want to hear?

  9. Jen Pitfield says:

    Wow! What an interesting story! Love learning new life lessons. Thanks, Jay, wonderful and informative as always.

  10. Talarie Giddens says:

    Jay, as always — wonderful writing! And you’re right, it isn’t something most of us think about or care to think about. However, I believe it is something we’ve all had thoughts on at one time or another and hopefully that was a pivotal point…to go forward from and do things different, greater, better, bigger, bolder… Thanks for bringing this back the forefront of my thoughts.

  11. Shannon says:

    My flesh died a long time ago:) They can write what they want because you can’t offend the dead… I have a spiritual being inside of me that was assigned to me the day I was born and belongs to my heavenly father. People worry too much about what people think of their flesh(the seen) they should be much more concerned with(the unseen)…2 Corinthians 5(NLT)

  12. Nan Fletcher says:

    Loved this article! Thank you Jay!

  13. Mary Alejandro says:

    As always, you bring me to a screeching halt, where in as I stop to think and evaluate my thoughts and gestures as to how I want to be remembered. As with everything else there will be good things and there will be bad things, but which outweighs the other. I would like to think that I am a good Christian with good intentions, but then I have to re-evaluate my style of living so that my good outweighs the bad. Thanks again for your article. Always giving us something to think about. Keep them coming. I love this article and the rest are amazing..

  14. Gene Dasher SR says:

    Actions do speak louder than words many times so it behooves us to watch our words and actions in life to be uplifting to our fellow mankind