grandmother and granddaughter spending time together

9 Simple Steps to Leave a Lasting Legacy and Avoid Future Regrets

Remember those times you reached out to a friend who was feeling down and turned their day around with your words? Or the times you helped a stranger with directions or stopped to buy lemonade from a child? Or how about the times you withheld criticism from a loved one or went out of your way to be kind to someone who was different from you?

Consider the parable of the Good Samaritan, where a simple act of kindness transformed a stranger’s life. Your actions, like those of the Samaritan, have the potential to touch lives in profound ways. Just as Jesus taught in Matthew 5:16, “Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

It’s in those moments you created positive change.

As you continue your journey, know that your choices, no matter how seemingly small, are like pebbles creating ripples in a pond. Your impact is real and meaningful! You have the power to leave a legacy of kindness, progress, and inspiration.

A Life Defined by Compassion

What do we live for, if not to make life less difficult for each other?

Reflect upon Galatians 6:2: “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Are you reminded of the times when others reached out to you during your struggles, providing comfort, understanding, a listening ear, and even tangible assistance such as a meal or a ride to an appointment? Those moments demonstrated the power of empathy and support, embodying the essence of what it means to follow Christ.

Being there for others isn’t just about sharing a few kind words. It’s about genuinely understanding their pain, listening with compassion, and taking action when needed. Heeding the call to “bear one another’s burdens” means being willing to step into someone else’s shoes, even if it entails walking a difficult path with them.

In Matthew 25:40, Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.” Your actions towards others are a direct expression of your relationship with God. Every time you ease someone’s burden, you are showcasing your love for Christ in a tangible way.

“God is never more happy than when we solve the problems of His children.” -Rabbi Lafin

As you journey through life, it is your purpose to utilize your gifts, skills, and abilities to make someone else’s life a bit easier. It isn’t just about achieving personal success; it’s about weaving a fabric of compassion, care, and love into every interaction, leaving a lasting legacy and making the world a better place.

Leave a Legacy Beyond the Present

How often do you get caught up in the temporal struggles, frustrations and things that won’t matter a few weeks from now, let alone in eternity? While you aren’t called to dismiss the importance of things happening currently in your life, you can also face each day with an eye on eternity.

So…what really matters in eternity?

Here are practical ways to make an eternal impact:

  1. Show Love: Demonstrate unconditional love and kindness to everyone you meet, creating a ripple effect of positivity.
  2. Serve Others: Volunteer and help those in need, providing support and encouragement, even in small acts of kindness. (learn more in this blog post)
  3. Mentorship: Invest in the lives of others, passing on wisdom and knowledge to empower future generations.
  4. Spread Positivity: Choose to speak words of encouragement and hope, uplifting those around you.
  5. Forgive Freely: Embrace forgiveness, let go of grudges, and foster reconciliation when appropriate.
  6. Practice Humility: Stay humble and let go of needing to be perfect.
  7. Impact through Art: Express your faith and beliefs through creative mediums like art, music, or writing, inspiring others spiritually.
  8. Prayer for others and yourself: God hears each one and acts upon our requests for our ultimate good and His glory. (learn more in this blog post)
  9. Personal relationship with God: Perhaps most important is accepting the gift of forgiveness offered through the death and resurrection of Jesus, the Son of God. He took the punishment for ALL of our sins so that we can live abundantly on earth until we reach our forever home in heaven.

Remember, the impact of your actions and decisions may not be immediately evident, but they can touch lives and change hearts in ways that last beyond this lifetime. Let your choices and actions leave a legacy of eternal impact!


Every choice you make, no matter how small, can send ripples of positivity and change into the world, forging a legacy that echoes into eternity. Your willingness to serve others, foster empathy, and cultivate a deep, personal relationship with God can be the foundation of a life rich with purpose and spiritual fulfillment.

As you stand on the cusp of making a lasting impact, consider this: what legacy do you wish to leave? How do you envision being remembered by those who accompany you in this walk of life?

If these questions ignite a spark of curiosity and determination within you, explore further with a complimentary copy of my e-book Road Trip: From Survival to Legacy. This guide will be your companion, assisting you in navigating the milestones that mark the path from where you are to where you desire to be. Click here to download the e-book.

September 25, 2023


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By Dr. Richelle Hoekstra-Anderson & Tom Ziglar