A Blessed Dash

A few months back, my wife and I were invited to a couples wedding shower for a friend’s daughter in McCalla. More specifically, it was in the Letson Farms subdivision. Because my wife was one of the hostesses, she had to be there early. Since it was torture enough for me to have to attend a shower at all–whose idea was it to start inviting men to these things?–I decided I didn’t want to spend any more time there than required, so I dropped her off and headed off to find something to do for an hour.

I remembered that a cousin of mine in California had traced our family tree, and he had discovered that Letson Farms was land where some distant kinfolks had once had a dairy farm. My cousin had also found that my great, great grandfather was buried in a church cemetery that is located right near the subdivision. So, I thought I’d go for a walk through the graveyard.
It is an old cemetery, though it’s now right off of I-459, with graves dating back to the early 1800’s, including one person who was a veteran of the War of 1812. I found the section where several grave markers displayed the name “Letson,” and there was the headstone of my grandfather’s grandfather. Beneath his name on the marker were two things: A set of dates: 1833-1902; and the simple statement: “Tho’ lost to sight, to memory dear.”
I was reminded of a sermon I heard once, and a poem quoted within in, entitled “The Dash.” It pointed to the “dash” in the middle of those two dates on a tombstone. We all know that the first date is when the person was born, and the second was when they died. But when you think about it, it’s that simple horizontal line in the middle that represents their whole life.
And really, though it’s usually ignored, it’s that punctuation mark–the dash–that counts most. It’s not so much when you started, or when you’ll stop, as what you do with the time between the dates. Or, more specifically, what you do with your “dash.”
So, I have to ask: What are you doing with yourdash? What kind of legacy are you leaving, by the kind of life that you are living? We can all choose, intentionally, what we do with the time God allots us here on earth, to invest it in those things that really matter, and to live in such a way that leaves a legacy that honors Him.
I pray that your dash is blessed this week, and I look forward to seeing you on Sunday.
–Pastor Ken
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