Sunday Post 191: My Eulogy

Last week I did my first eulogy.  Do you do a eulogy?  Say a eulogy?  I guess you eulogize someone.

I was honored to be asked by an elderly lady who attended my church and who was an avid exerciser at the Y.  She called me a month or so ago and explained that she had been diagnosed with lung cancer.  She felt like her time was limited.  She was making plans.

Sarah told me I was a good man and that certainly I could think of something good to say about her.  She was right.  It was easy to think of wonderful things about my friend.

It’s a huge responsibility to speak at someone’s funeral.  The opportunity only comes around once.  It is the single time that folks will outwardly, in front of your friends and family, talk about what you’ve meant to this world.

As I thought about Sarah last week, I also thought about the end of my life.  When it’s all said and done, what would I want someone to say about me?

I really spent some time thinking about this and have decided there are about five things I hope someone will remember when they give that 10 minute synopsis of my life.

1) He made us laugh.

2) He was a really, really good father.

3) He made a difference in this world (and be able to support that statement with several specific examples).

4) He lived his faith through his actions.

5)  He loved people – he loved all people, and it showed.

When I look through this list, there are a couple I think I’ll knock out of the park.  There are a few, though, where I’m currently coming up short.  That means I have to accept that I’m probably going to fail or I’m going to have to make some changes now.

Suppose I lived my life with those five goals in mind.  What if I considered my daily actions determining if what I was doing was moving me toward those goals or away from them?

Perhaps a little focus today, will ensure a more interesting and thoughtful message upon my demise.

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9 Comments

  1. Excellent questions! Food for thought.

    Reply
  2. Aunt Susan

     /  October 26, 2014

    Well I agree with #1 but sometimes I want to pull a Kinsey and bop you on the head, some of your “laughs” are punny #2 is a no brainer, except add a few more reallys, #3 you can always refer to #2 but also in your talk with others about your experiences, #4 is a definite and #5 is very true. Do I need to go get a plastic bowl?

    Reply
  3. Now I have to go outline my eulogy and and see if I’m living the life I want others to remember me by! I think, like you, I’ve hit some points, but I’m sure I’m coming up short on others!

    Reply
  4. Loved this post. Also wanted to say that I look forward Sunday and Tuesday because I know there will be a post from you, which I say by way of telling that commenter you wrote about to go jump in a lake. Not sure what she hoped to gain by being unkind. But you do bring enjoyment to me. And I’m guessing a lot if other people. So thanks.

    Reply
  5. I like this – what good things to strive for for sure.

    Reply
  6. Wayne

     /  October 29, 2014

    After doing a eulogy and saying some nice things about someone who deserved said comments, a friend came up to me and said. “I’m going to have to turn my life around so you’ll be able to say nice things about me. Right now you’d find it difficult to preach my funeral.” I told him I’d done worse than him! A lady friend tells me every time I do a eulogy: “Add that to my file. I want you to say that about me.” To her I reply: “I’ve already got a file full of what to say about you and that is not on your list!” One of the more difficult things about being a pastor is having to do a funeral for someone you can’t think of a thing good to say about!

    Reply

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