In 2010 the average life expectancy in the U.S. was 78 years. That means the average person lives for 936 months, or 4,056 weeks or 28,470 days or however you want to look at it!! Rite now I’m 17 and it feels like I have forever to decide what I want to do with my life, who I want to become and what mark I want to leave on this world…… And I might… I might have another 61 years ahead of me to make an impact on the people around me - or, I might only have another 61 seconds.
My youth pastors have a story they tell in youth a lot I always call it “the dash story” first one of them will tell us a story about a man he worked for for a long time who lived for a long time, ran a company and made a good bit of money but he never really had a big impact on anyone’s life. Then the other will tell us about a little girl she taught a few years ago who died of cancer when she was only 6 years old. The little girls family decided to have Christmas early that year because they new their young daughter wouldn’t be with them for Christmas. One night just before the family’s early Christmas my YPs went to the girls house and this SIX year old girl who new she only had two - three weeks left to live was happy and smiling and genuinely joyful. This really had an affect on how my YPs looked at their lives. They finnish this story by talking about how when you look at a head stone you see the year the person died a DASH and then the year they died (ex: 1995 - 2073) they talk about how it’s not the numbers on a person’s headstone that matters - it’s what they do with the time in between the numbers “THE DASH”
Today I’ve been thinking about my “dash” quite a bit and I realized that I’m SEVENTEEN and haven’t got a clue what I want to do with my dash!!!!!!! Yes, I know what I want to do as far as college and my career but I haven’t figured out what mark I want to leave on the people around me. I know I want to make an impact, leave behind a legacy, but I haven’t clue what I want that legacy to be!!!!! Obviously I want to reach people for God and help them find their way to the love and grace that I know now that I’ve given my life to Him - I’m even pretty sure that I specifically want to work with youth but HOW am I going to reach out to them??? I don’t want to be one of those lives that touches others but never leaves a mark! I want to make an impact!! I want God to use me to bust a big ol’ hole in the walls people have put up around themselves to keep Him out!
So I’ve decided it is time, not only for me - but for this entire generation, to start figuring out what we want to do with our dashes, its time for us to start making an IMPACT!!!! I believe that one life can change the entire world wether they realize they’re doing it or not. So instead of just going about life doing whatever and not noticing the impact you have on the world, pay attention. Every action has a consequence and everything you do affects the people around you - one word out of your mouth can either make someone’s day or destroy it… I don’t always think about the affect my words and actions have on others but it is definitely time to start…
So, if there is anyone reading this I want to challenge you to figure out how YOU want to impact the world, what legacy you want to leave behind and to become the person you want to be remembered as….