A woman asked an acquaintance whose husband had recently died, “Did he have any last words?”
“No,” said the widow. “He slipped away so quickly that we didn’t have a chance to talk about anything.”
“How sad,” the friend replied. “It must break your heart.”
The widow graciously responded, “Oh, don’t feel sorry for me. I have something better. I recall so well the night he testified in church about his faith in Christ. I also have the wonderful memory of his consistent life that spoke far more effectively of his devotion to God than a few comforting comments in his final moments.”
It’s wonderful to have that kind of testimony. In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul used two word pictures to describe the type of influence we should have on those around us. Our lives are to be a fragrance, sweet to believers but repulsive to the unsaved (2 Cor. 2:14-17). And we are to be like living letters that speak well of our Lord and the gospel (3:2-3).
A deathbed testimony of one’s faith can bring comfort to those who sorrow, but a faithful life is even better. That’s something to keep in mind as we evaluate how our lives are being viewed by others. At our own death the testimony of our lives will say even more than our final words!
O help us, Lord, to serve You well
And live a life so true
That when we die our friends may say,
"His life spoke well for You." —DJD
The memory of a faithful life speaks more eloquently than words.