If you’re looking to leave something in your will to someone, my name is spelled Lynn Pryor.
Last Wills and Testaments are typically straighforward documents. Everything goes to a spouse or is divided equally among children or relatives. Maybe a large contribution to missions or a ministry. But there are other wills …hoo, boy. Requests can be made and anything can be left to anyone in a will—no matter how quirky. Need some examples?
Take Ed Hendrick. Hendrick patented the Frisbee. He invented the sport of disc golf. He loved the game and he loved the plastic round disk—so much so that his will stipulated that he was to be cremated (presumably after he died) and his ashes be used in the making of Frisbees. These special Frisbees were given to family and friends. “Uh, gee thanks, Uncle Ed.”
Jonathan Jackson loved cats. When he died in 1880, he willed that his large estate be turned into a “cat mansion.” It included an infirmary in case Snickers or Princess got sick, private dorimitories for each cat, play areas, and of course an auditorium where cat music was played. (I have no idea what cat music is. Was this the music of Cat Stevens, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats, or a more high-brow meow-sician of the classical purrsuasion?)
Speaking of musicians, Heinrich Heine was a poet whose words were set to music by Schubert and Schumann. In his will, he left everything to his wife on the condition that she remarry first. What a thoughtful husband! No, wait. He wanted her to remarry because he wanted to be sure there was one man who regretted his death.
Before the author Robert Louis Stevenson died, he realized he would no longer need his birthday—so he willed it to a little girl named Anna Ide. Stevenson said his birthdays had been fine all through his life, and someone else should enjoy them. So every year on Stevenson’s birthday, Anna received a cake and presents.
Finally, there was Luis Carlos De Noronha Cabral Da Camara, a ridiculously wealthy Portugese man. He may have had lots of money, but he was bankrupt in friends and family. So he choose seventy names at random out of the phone book and left them a nice chunk of money. Seventy random people who, I’m sure, were glad they didn’t have an unlisted number.
I have yet to be willed a large stash of cash by a wealthy stranger nor have I recevied an unusual Frisbee in the mail. Sure, you can remember me in your will, but I’m OK if you don’t. I’ve already got an inheritance—a huge one.
For those who follow Christ, we have “an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you” (1 Pet. 1:4). And we didn’t receive this in some random fashion. God had His eyes on us “before the foundation of the world” (Eph. 1:4).
Please don’t think I’m being trite or just trying to sound overly spiritual. I like having money in my pocket and I like my stuff, but I live daily with the realization that all this is temporary. Very temporary. All this “stuff” that gives me a feeling of satisfaction and security is inventory for a future garage sale. In other words, I’ll always be looking for something else for my collection of stuff to rekindle that temporary sense of satisfaction and security.
But the inheritance we have in Christ lasts. It does not perish. It does not spoil. It will not fade. We have an eternal sense of secuity and contentment, not because of what Christ provides, but because of Christ Himself, the one who provides
I’m learning I can wait for this greater inheritance—and I can be content in my waiting. After all …
“What no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no human heart has conceived—God has prepared these things for those who love him” (1 Cor. 2:9).
That’s better than any cat mansion.
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