I attended a funeral for a well-loved man of my congregation in Dearborn earlier this week.
On the back of the memorial service bulletin, there was a creed, which happened to be the mantra that this man tried to live by. A simple Google search showed that this is an excerpt from Forest Witcraft’s poem, “Within My Power” and is commonly used to recognize teachers.
“One hundred years from now, it will not matter what kind of car I drove, what house I lived in, how much was in my bank account, nor what my clothes looked like. But the world may be a better place because I was important in the life of a child.”
In my opinion, this man did not just try to live by these words, but outright succeeded in all efforts. He wasn’t a teacher in the traditional sense, he worked for Ford Motor Company for 31 years and then devoted his retirement to serving his community through being an active member and leader in Kiwanis, advisor to the Dearborn High Key Club (Kiwanis Educates Youth), actively served within our congregation at First Dearborn as well as many other things.
As I prepare to begin a full-time ministry with abandoned children in Peru (this is even applicable here in Dearborn as I serve as the Interim Student Ministries Director within my congregation!), this philosophy is an important thing to remember. In this world we live in that is filled with wants, desires, and “needs” (different from the true needs), it is very easy to get caught up in that. The most important thing we can do is build positive relationships with the generations to follow and be important in their life.