I don’t know if it’s the fact that my sister and bro-in-law are away at children’s camp or the nostalgia of the summer, but I’ve been thinking a lot this week about the people that have invested in me.
A couple weeks ago, I had a pretty heartfelt convo about the amazing people that invested in me in my growing up years. I know I am who I am today because of them. Yes, I was fortunate enough to grow up in a great home with amazing parents, but it took a village for me.
I’m hard headed. I like to be the best (my best). I like to be creative and wonder “what if”. I like to pioneer concepts. I like to ask the obvious question. I’m not afraid to say what everyone else is thinking.
Those traits have carried me to this point, but they’ve also made the road a little bumpy.
I mean, look at this moment. Look at those eyes and ears. I cannot imagine all they are absorbing this week. I’m a little nervous about the short guy in the back and what he might be teaching those sweet faces in the camo shirts. But, I know He loves Jesus, but more importantly, he wants to tell them about him.
And, this one. She always melts my heart.
If there is anything I’ve learned from her it's, patience pays off. She is kind. She serves. She gives. She is excellent. She draws from a deep well. She has so much to bestow.
And I sit here today at my desk and I wonder. What conversations has she had at night in the bunk beds? What has she talked about in the afternoon or during rec time? What do those girls think about her? Do they see her beauty? Do they know that her face lights up because her heart is illuminated? Do they want to be like her when they grow up? Me, I do!
There are others just like her (and him). They invested in me. They spoke truth in the lobby of the Irving Library at our weekly mentor sessions in 11th grade. They sat in the stinky “middle room” and glued and glittered and we laughed together at Latham Springs. They sat on the edge of the bed in a hotel room in Washington DC and rubbed Mary Kay lotion on my hands while they told me I was beautiful (even when that boy did not think so!). They spoke truth to me across the table at Atlanta Bread Company in Jonesboro. They stood in silence in the lobby of LR Hematology Oncology. They taught me the tune of “Girls in Action” before I went on stage and did a silly skit. They said “You is kind. You is smart. You is important” on a floor mat in a preschool room long before a movie made the mantra famous.
Their lives and this moment challenge me to think about a quote I heard yesterday. “Who are you investing in that could someday replace you?” While the question was posed about my place in the workforce, I think it applies to my place in the kingdom and my place in the world. Am I investing forward? Throw out “legacy” and the terms of “how you will be remembered”. Are you investing? Am I investing?