This past weekend I had the honor of speaking at the funeral of a dear friend.
Ernest Smith was 92. Alzheimer’s began to rob him of his mental sharpness seven years ago. When he died, he years ago had forgotten who we were. Very sad way to end your days.
I knew Ernest from church and from my involvement in the community in Bartow. He took me under his wing when I moved to town 35 years ago. I’m grateful he was my mentor and friend.
He lived a good life. I found a definition of what a life well lived includes:
4. A life of meaningful work.
Ernest could check each of those boxes. His faith was steadfast. His wife and children loved him til the end. His community service was broad and wide. His finger prints are all over the good things that happen in Bartow.
He built one of the largest Ford dealerships in America. When he was ready to retire, he had a team developed ready to take the business over. They’ve made it even stronger.
I was moved to tell you about Ernest today by a paragraph I read in a book today:
“Whatever we give our life to, we are always making sacrifices. Whether we are giving up an hour, a day or a lifetime, we are spending our lives.
We are giving our lives for it,”
Legacy by James Kerr
It was an honor and a privilege to tell Ernest’s story because he made it count. Lives were impacted. He will be remembered. The life he spent really counted.
How about yours? You can’t go back and reclaim any time you spent frivolously. You can begin to be thoughtful and intentional how you will spend your days going forward.
Ernest reminded me to make it count. To spend my time to achieve something.
6001 Foxtrot Ave.
Bartow, FL 33830
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