Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Growing a Legacy

“The true meaning of life is to plant trees under whose shade you do not expect to sit.” 
-Nelson Henderson

How does his garden grow?
A life-long United Methodist from Eastern Washington woke up one day to a painful sense that “his days may be numbered.”  After the death of his beloved wife and near-second heart attack (which resulted in bypass surgery) he began to reflect deeply on the people and things that mattered most to him.  One of the things that gave his life great joy was caring for his church’s gardens and grounds

While he loved the church gardens, he began to worry about who would care for them after he no longer could.  He also worried about the financial burden that maintaining the grounds in his absence would place on the church.  He decided to approach the United Methodist Foundation of the Northwest to seed a small endowment fund to care for the gardens and grounds after his death.  (The endowment was funded from a 401K plan that, following his wife’s death, was no longer needed. In addition it carried a tax liability if left to his children.)

The Seeds Grow!
As grace would have it, after more than ten years since he first planted the endowment, this faithful friend is still tending the church’s land!  Now, both the grounds and the endowment are flourishing – the latter holds over $120,000 and it continues to grow!  This friend has magnified his joy knowing that he’s helping his church to thrive and his little “Eden” to remain a glimpse of God’s kingdom in perpetuity.

What sort of a legacy would you like to grow?
What are those ministries, people, and places that matter most to you?  What will they need to thrive when you’re no longer around to help care for them?  While only you can answer the first question, people from our church’s endowment committee and from the United Methodist Foundation of the Northwest can help you to answer the second.  You don’t have to be rich to grow a caring legacy; these creative, thoughtful people can help you to use whatever God has entrusted to you to be a life-giving blessing for years and years to come. 

May the seeds that God has sown bring abundant life to you
and to those who matter most to you!

---Tom Wilson, UM Foundation NW Texas Ann Conf

God Is Still In Control!

Miss Lladale Carey
Web Content Producer

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