Tuesday, September 20, 2011


In 1987, the first time I went back to college, I took an advanced English comp class at Tarrant County Junior College in Fort Worth. It was an advanced class because we did our composition on computers! We each had a Mac SE with 2 mb of memory and a 20 mb hard drive. We printed our documents on dot matrix printers. So much for advanced.

Anyway, one of our assignments was to write an essay on success. The premise was, when we came to the end of our days, what things would make us feel like our lives had been a success.

I think I had to rewrite that essay four or five times… maybe six. My idea of success and my teacher's idea were not the same. She wanted me to have tangible—measurable—evidences of success. I don't even remember what I wrote as the final paper. I'm sure it was something she settled for because I got an A in the class, but it wasn't something that satisfied my idea of success.

Now, having lived half a century and hoping for half a century more, I still can't pen tangible evidences of a life of success. If success has to be tangible, I'm not it. I live in a modest home on a modest income. Like many, I juggle more money that I save. It won't take long to settle my estate after I'm gone. My will amounts to two words: All done.

But success? There are things I want the people close to me to know and remember. I want my husband to know he was loved wildly and unconditionally and supported 1000%. I want my children to have been better, not bitter, because I was their mom. I want my grandchildren to have a heritage worth cherishing. I want my friends to remember me as someone who listened to the good and to the bad and always gave them the benefit of the doubt.

There are things I want the people around me to remember. I want them all to know that I loved Jesus. I want them all to know the Jesus I love.

I want Jesus to say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant."

Those things aren't tangible, they are beyond measure.