Live Full…Die Empty

This has been an extremely emotional weekend. While I was preparing to go out of town to attend the funeral of a close family friend, I received word that another friend and colleague had also died. After the initial shock began to subside, I became very reflective. Death has an extraordinary way of compelling you to reflect on not only the life of your loved one, but also your own life.  flower-life

During the funeral service on Saturday, as I sat listening to all the wonderful tributes and the celebration of life, I was reminded of the quote “Live full, Die Empty.” I found myself reflecting on my own life. Am I living full? Am I utilizing my God-given talents to the fullest? I am using the resources He’s blessed me with to impact lives? I wondered what would be said about me if it was my funeral. How would those who knew me reflect on the live I lived?

One thing’s for certain, I want the life I live to speak for me. I want to be remembered as a person who loved God with all her heart and strove daily to pleased Him. I want to die knowing that I was the best wife, mother, sister, friend and entrepreneur I could be. I want to live full and die empty. I don’t want to take my gifts and talents, my ambitions and visions to the grave with me. Empty_tombstone

  • Are you living full?
  • Do you have unrealized dreams that you haven’t taken action to fulfill?
  • What is one thing you want to be remembered by?

SN: My heart and prayer goes out to the parent’s of Trayvon Martin. In light of Zimmerman’s “not guilty” verdict, I pray that God comfort their hearts and give them peace like only He can. You don’t have to be a person of color to imagine the heartbreak of a mother losing her child as a result of an avoidable altercation initiated by someone else.

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40 thoughts on “Live Full…Die Empty

  1. Alison

    Hey Hope, I know what you mean about reexamining one’s life in the wake of the death of friends and colleagues. I’ve been in that mode for the last year or so. In a way, it’s healthy to reflect and want to make one’s life count. We will have to give account to God for our commissions and omissions, so it’s wise to ponder what our legacy will be. The key is not to let it overtake our thoughts and emotions until it makes us feel down. I confess to having been that way for a while. I thank God for bringing me out into a healthier space in which I can make more sound decisions that will honor Him and, indeed, the lives of my friends who have passed on.

    Very thought-provoking post!
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      You’re so right, if we’re not careful, it’s easy to get caught up in our emotions. I was extremely sad for a long time after my mom passed and just when I was coming out of it, my dad passed. But thank God for His grace because I can give Him my hurt and emptiness and He fills it. I’m so happy that you also allowed God to bring you to a healthier space. Thanks so much for sharing Alison.

      Reply
  2. Michelle

    Hope, I am so sorry for your loss. Please know I am thinking of you. Whenever someone dies unexpectedly, I always think about the same things that you mentioned. If I were to die tomorrow, would I have regrets? Have I lived my life the way I should have? Thank you for the reminder of how very important this reflection is!
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  3. Chris Carter

    Oh Hope… I am so so sorry for your loss. What a horribly tragic time for you and those you love. Thank you for this post- you are an inspiration to so many. I am one of the many hearts you have touched.
    I love that quote- and I love the one on the tombstone too. I am with you in this journey- as we give fully and freely for Him. I will be praying for you and for those dear friends’ families.
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  4. veronica

    Great post. I think in the hustle and bustle of today’s world it is so easy to lose track of why we were placed on this Earth, to glorify God. There are so many ways to do that and yet daily I must admit that I put that on the back burner in order to glorify myself. It’s not a conscience choice. I know I never go into it thinking, “I will exalt me today over God.” But actions speak louder than words. In think this is where the daily renewing of my mind has to come into place.
    Thank you for the reminder.

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  5. Nellie

    Hope, I am so so sorry for your loss. One is hard enough but two?! That is so painful. This certainly a reflective time, I am always thinking about my “legacy” and what my family can say about me when I pass. I am always worried that I am spending time in the right places? With the right people? I dont know but I pray I am doing the right thing. Sometimes I get confirmation sometimes I don’t. *huge hugs*
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      Thank you Nellie. It’s so important to leave a good legacy. That’s what will be passed on to your children and their children. But it’s not always easy knowing if you’re doing the right thing. Thanks for the hug :)

      Reply
  6. Tamara

    I am so sorry – you wrote so beautifully and I’m sorry it has to be about pain. I do have unrealized dreams but I also feel myself living more fully now than ever before. Maybe I live my life half full? I love the quotes you used.
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      Thank you Tamara. I think that’s such a wonderful thing that you’re living more fully now…even if it’s half full. For many, life is empty. Reflecting sometimes help to put things into perspective.

      Reply
  7. Kita

    People are alive but some of us don’t live. I am one of the ones who let just go on by without living to the fullest because I was scared or funding was low I have stopped doing that and now I have started to live life a little more and enjoy some things. Great post
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  8. Michell

    Hey Hope! So sorry for your loss(es) my friend! Death has such finality…it always makes you reflect on the shouldas, wouldas and couldas. After my husband’s best friend, who was also our children’s god-father, passed away unexpectedly, we ALL got a wake-up call…that this life is not guaranteed! We all decided then that in honor of him and all the loved ones we lost(but most importantly our Savior giving His life SO that we may live), we were going to live ours to the fullest Hope! Thanks so much for sharing with us. Praying comfort to you and the families who lost their loved ones! Have a blessed week my friend!
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      Wow! That’s a powerful way to honor God and your children’s god-father… living life to the fullest. Death IS so final. Thank you for sharing this part of your experience Michell. Thanks also for your prayers. I know the families will be comforted by it.

      Reply
  9. Joi

    I’m sorry for your recent loss Hope! My prayers to you right now and always!

    When things like this happen and especially back to back, it causes me to assess as well. I try really hard to live to my potential and always do things for myself and not because of other people’s opinion/approval/disapproval etc. I am happy with the work I’ve done so far. I am here for as long as the man upstairs so desires to have me and will continually be busy working for him. That is and always will be my purpose for all that I do!

    As your blog friend and loyal reader Defining Hope, you are an amazing stewart in my book & a role model to young women and girls. It is a blessing to have met you and get to experience pieces of your life by way of blogging and social media.

    Absolutely share your sentiments to the Martin family!
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      Thank you so much Joi. I think they way you’ve living your life is exactly the way it should be lived…live to your potential, not people pleasing and being busy for God. Well stated.

      There’s a saying “Give me my flowers while I am living.” Thank you Joi for those beautiful flowers. Your kind words are very encouraging and means so much.

      Reply
  10. Sherelle

    Very touching post! You’re so right, death has a way of making us reflect on our lives. I did a seminar on the ‘7 habits of highly effective people’, and it made me look at circumstances, myself, and others differently. I love the quote about carving your name on people’s hearts. I want people to remember me from my contributions to others whether it be my time, assistance, kindness, etc. I pray that hearts and minds can be changed from the outcome of the Trayvon Martin case.
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      I read that book and it was a game changer for me. It helped me develop habits of success. I think that’s such a great aspect of living…sowing into other people’s lives like you do.

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  11. Rum Punch Drunk

    I’m so sorry for the losses you have recently had and my prayers are with you and all the family/friends. Death makes life a reality. I think about it more than before especially as I’m getting older now. For some people, it’s not until someone dies that they stop what they were are doing to analyze life. For others, it makes them change for the better once they realise that death will take whoever it wants, when it wants and there’s not much we can do to stop it.

    I’d be lying if I said today I’m living life to the fullest, but ask me again tomorrow and you just might get a better answer.
    As for a legacy. That again is something to think about. It has changed recently.
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    1. Hope@DefiningHope Post author

      Thank you so much. That’s the beauty and blessing of each day, you get an opportunity to change things with each breath taken. so if yesterday you didn’t live fully, today is another chance.

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  12. Bev

    What a moving, thoughtful post. I am so sorry for the double losses. Your quotes and post really made me think and take notice. Thank you.

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