The Picture of a Legacy
When I mention the word legacy, what comes to mind? Rockefeller, Carnegie, Ford. or biblical leaders like Jonathan Edwards and Billy Graham. Do you think of those old movies where some old man has left a fortune to his great grand son in his Will but first the grandson must pass a test to receive the fortune?
For a moment, let your mind leave reality…
You see a 23 year old young man sitting in the back of a limousine, he is dressed in a black tuxedo and an overcoat, the boy has just graduated college. The limousine winds up a mountain road and comes to a large iron gate at the top, the gates open and the limousine drives through a golf course, it pulls up to a country club resort on the top of the mountain, the sun is setting in the background and the sky looks like a burst of orange, blue and white colors.
The door to the limousine opens and two older gentlemen dressed in black tuxedos are waiting for the young man, they are two friends of the boy’s father and strong Christians, they lead him into the country club. They go through a series of rooms and stop outside 2 large dark mahogany doors. The young man knocks on the doors three times, a voice from behind the door says “Enter” The two gentlemen open both doors and the young man enters the room.
The room is a large study with dark wooden bookshelves filled with many old looking books. A large fireplace has a fire crackling on one side of the room. There are many old pictures of distinguished gentlemen on the wall; the small coffee tables are filled with crystal and marble pieces. There are many large leather chairs and 2 leather sofas in the room.
The room is filled with 10 men all dressed in black tuxedos, 12 men in all plus the young man. The men are uncles, coaches, family friends, his Boy Scout leader, other men who have influenced the young man and the boy’s pastor.
At the head of the room, the young man’s father and grand-father are standing behind a large hand carved desk, on the desk is an old dust covered trunk.
Over the past few years, the young man has had many tests and adventures: a mission trip in South America, climbing Flatirons in Colorado, hunting a grizzly in Northern Canada, teaching at a summer youth camp, raising money for the homeless and committing his life to Christ.
The young man walks up to the desk, the grand-father takes a key on a chain from around his neck and opens the trunk. Inside, the father and grand father take out some of the unique contents. First, is an old sword and sheath, it is adorned with crosses and other Christian symbols. The father tells the young man to kneel. The father takes the sword and places it on the young mans shoulder in knighting fashion. The father recites an oath as the young man repeats the words. His father then presents the sword to his son “Take this in recognition of the morals, values and courage you have learned, let it be symbol of your warrior spirit and to remember to protect your family when needed.”
The grand-father pulls an old frayed and worn bible from the chest. He opens it and it bears the names of his father, grandfather, great grand father and many uncles. The grand-father explains that this bible was his great, great grandfathers and has been passed to the men in the family for the past 150 years. In this bible are notes and passages underlined by all the prominent men in the family. The grand father hands the bible to the young man and says “Take this and continue your spiritual quest, you have proven yourself as a worthy Christian man."
Next the father pulls an old leather book from the trunk, it is hand carved on the cover and looks like an old oak tree, and the young man has seen this book many times in his life. Each time he sat with his father and learned specific lessons about spirituality, finances, morals, and leadership his dad would read from this book. The father opens the book to a page filled with many signatures and dates from the last 100 years.
The boy is handed a fountain pen and told to inscribe his signature and the date. His father says “You are now entered into the book of leaders, of real men. You have passed numerous tests and proved that you are a capable and fair leader.”
The grand-father now pulls a small black velvet box from the trunk, he hands it to the young man. The young man opens the box to see a set of keys and a piece of paper bearing a bank address with an account number and signature card. The grand-father proclaims “This is an investment account in your name, it was opened when you were 5 years old and contributed to your entire life, it now holds investments worth over $460,000 in it. You have passed many financial tests and have proven that you are worthy of using this money for you and your future family.”
Next the boy’s pastor comes forward and asks all to bow their heads in prayer. The pastor prays for the boy and thanks God for all that he has accomplished, he prays to continue to guide this young man during the next phase of his life. When the pastor is finished another man hands the boy a fine cigar and 15 year old glass of cognac in a crystal class. Everyman in the room now holds a cigar and glass of cognac; they toast the young man and clap in applause for him.
Each man lines up and in turn comes forward and congratulates him, they all offer him a small gift to remember the occasion. A compass with his initials engraved, a plaque bearing his family name and crest. After all have congratulated the young man the gentlemen walk through a side door in the study, the young man is the last to walk through the door and immediately he hears a loud roar of applause and yelling. He is now in a large banquet room and all his friends and family are present standing around large tables decorated like a wedding reception.
All the gentlemen are seated at a long table in which the young man takes his seat in the center. Once again they toast the young man and then sit down to a hand catered meal. During the meal, each gentleman stands up and says a few words and shares a story about the young man and his voyage to true greatness. After the meal, the boy’s father and mother take him back into the study. His mother pulls one last item from the trunk, a very large leather book; the size of a photo album, the boy looks through the pages and sees pictures of very memorable moments in his life from the time he was born. Sports events, awards he won, fishing trips, family vacations, and his Christian youth group. Beside each photo is a small narrative written by his parents and other family members and friends, they each share their memories of the young man at his event and how proud they are of him.
The boy hugs his parents and tears fill his eyes, he is so grateful for all they have done. His mother shows him the last 20 pages or so of the photo book, they are blank. “These are for you to fill with your next journey, your marriage, your future family, it is for you to continue and pass on your Legacy to future generations.”
The boy is filled with confidence and is ready to take on the world.
The parents are proud and happy in knowing that their son is now ready for any trial that life has in store for him and with God's help and the knowledge he has gained, his life will be destined for true greatness.
How would you feel if someone would have done this for you?
How would you feel after 10 years of mentorship and you finally made it to this night?
What kind of confidence would this instill in you knowing that these men and family members believe you are ready for this type of responsibility?
I would feel like a strong and confident man, capable of taking on whatever the world decided to throw my way.
Okay, how do you get to here from wherever you are now?
That is what Legacy Dad is all about. It is about the core principles to pass on, the training involved, the tests he takes, the memories and adventures, and how to put it all together into an easy road map that you can tailor and follow.
It is about taking your children through a process and finally culminating at this unique crossing over ceremony, not because of their age, but because they have proven themselves capable. It is at this point that you will realize that you did all you could, you left no stone unturned and you molded your child into a strong, healthy Christian adult. It is also at this point that your child will never forget this day and all you have done and sacrificed for them, they will forever feel a closeness to you unlike any ever found.
Welcome to Legacy Dad
-Esse Quam Videri-