Thinking Out Loud

September 15, 2016

Career Peaks and Valleys

Filed under: Christianity — Tags: , , , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 9:37 am

life's journey

What will your life be remembered for?

Probably about 99% of the reading that I do is Christian literature in some form, but last night I finished reading the autobiography of a guy I went to school with, who went on to achieve fame in the music business. There was no faith element to this — but for one reference of him marrying a “practicing Christian’ — though I did once give him a Randy Stonehill album because I thought their styles were similar.

Some elements of the story were known to me, especially those from the early days, where there were mentions of people I knew including my next door neighbors. The story chronicles the highs and lows of a career that is subject to the fickle whims of everyone from record company execs to consumers. It also contained the predictable sidebar of financial gains and losses that seems so commonplace in narratives of this type.

Fortunately, after his singing career peaked, he was lucky enough to have a second life as a successful songwriter…

…Everyone’s life is a story and just because you grew up in the same part of the world doesn’t mean your journey is on a trajectory similar to your school friends. There is a branching out that takes place after graduation, and if you go on to college or university, another that occurs after that graduation ceremony. Our life paths are all unique.

The general expectation is that when one finally gets around to entering adulthood, they will work at a particular profession and continue there until retirement, right? Not any more. In the new, often turbulent economy, people may undergo career changes quite frequently, with the result that our lives are not too dissimilar to the actors and novelists and pop stars of the world…

…When I read something like this biography, I often wonder how my life would read bound between the pages of a hardcover book. My friend’s career peaked when he was still in his mid-twenties, but there are stories of people, like KFC founder Harlan Sanders, whose life really didn’t take off until he was 60.

What will your life be remembered for?

I wrote this when I was much younger from the perspective of an older man who nearing the end of life — or having a mid-life crisis — who wishes he had lived life differently. It was written with music, so the rhythm bends a bit to accommodate the lyrics, but hopefully just reading it doesn’t distract from the content.

The time has come to look around
Just before the daylight ends
Wish I could have accomplished more
The life I lived seems empty
Now I wish it had been full
What will my life be remembered for?

Some men have built great buildings
Some men have written songs
Others were heroes in a war
I’m not a writer or inventor
Nor a teacher or a preacher (so tell me)
What will my life be remembered for?

Some men have found diseases’ cures
Others ways to lighten loads
Some gave leadership, and more
Doctors, lawyers, Indian chiefs
I’m neither one of these (so help me)
What’ll my life be remembered for?

Society bears the mark of ones
Who contributions made
To boldly go where no man’s gone before
Butchers, bakers, candle-makers
Libraries list their names (but not mine)
What’ll my life be remembered for?

Some men make it in Who’s Who
While others write on walls
While astronauts and pilots higher soar
The Guinness Book of Records
Shows what other men have done (but not me)
What will my life be remembered for?

If I could leave a painting
Or a book or an idea
Or maybe sail uncharted shores
Entertainers, living legends
Athletes, immortalized
No famous quotation have I to share
So what’ll my life be remembered for?

I’d like to be in pictures
And no introduction need
And give of my time, talents, wealth and more
The hour glass runs out of sand
No moments for me
A lonely poor man cries out loud
“What’ll my life be remembered for?”

Psalm 90: 12 Teach us to realize how short our lives are.
    Then our hearts will become wise.  (NIrV)

Luke 12:16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’

18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself? (NIV)

Psalm 139:6b    … all the days ordained for me were written in your book  before one of them came to be.  (NIV)



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