During an activity at work today, I had about 10 minutes to write an obituary for myself. For context, a story was shared about Alfred Nobel. Here’s a brief description, taken and abridged from here.
Alfred B. Nobel (1833-1896) amassed his fortune by producing explosives, most notably, dynamite. When Nobel’s brother died, a newspaper erroneously ran a long obituary of Alfred Nobel. He had the pretty much non-existent opportunity to read his own obituary. It horrified him — he was described as the one who made it possible to kill more people more quickly than ever before. Nobel recognized this was not how he wanted to be remembered. Shortly thereafter, he established the awards. Today, everyone is familiar with the Nobel Prize, while relatively few people know how Nobel made his fortune.
Powerful story, right?
Two questions were posed: “How do you want to be remembered?” and “Are you living in a way to make that a reality?” Here’s what I hope my obituary may sound something like.
Zachary Thomas Duvall (1987 – 2016). Survived by his parents, Jim and Sharon; his siblings, Joshua, Matthew, Emily, Daniel, Jennifer, and Jeremy; his sisters-in-law, Amanda and Chandler; and his nieces, Maddison and Aburey. Zach was a wonderful son, brother, friend, and coworker. Those who knew him often commented that he was a good listener and a loyal friend. Zach tried to see goodness in people and help them to let that shine. He also valued education and pursued a career in a helping profession. He had faith in Jesus Christ as his Savior and commented before he died that he looked forward to seeing Him again.
This was an interesting activity for sure! And I heard HWN while reflecting on how my life compares against my own obituary.