So we must be equally focused, not on success or recognition or power or control but on leaving a legacy of glory for Jesus in the lives of those we prepare to communicate God’s ways to the next generation.

5. Jesus was a patient man.

He was patient with His men even when they brought Him to the edge of frustration. Remember when He warned His men about the yeast of the Pharisees and the Herodians, and they thought He was concerned that they had only one loaf of bread in the boat with them (Mk. 8:14-21)? Jesus reminded them of the feeding of the five thousand and the four thousand. What patience! And with such foolish fellows.

Once again, following one of the greatest moments of His ministry, the only time when He was able to show His ultimate glory at the Transfiguration, He came back to His men and found them in a debate over casting out demons. They had devastated the faith of the father who brought his son to be delivered from a demon.  Jesus said to them, “O unbelieving and perverse generation, how long shall I stay with you (Mt. 17:18)?” He answered His own question by staying with them and loving them to the very end.  He showed amazing patience with men who had no right to His endurance.

Making the Father known to blind and deaf men and women who are often more interested in their own glory than His is a frustrating task, especially when we are such people ourselves.  We may not think of patience as primary in leaving a legacy of glory, but it is only as we persevere in serving such unprofitable servants as ourselves that we see that glory grow.

6. Jesus was an obedient man.

Jesus said yes when everything in Him wanted to say no. Remember the scene in Gethsemane when Jesus called out with a loud voice and tears to the one who could save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverent submission. It was then that He learned obedience through suffering and became the source of our eternal salvation (Heb. 5:7-9). He wanted to give us redemption, but if there were any way other than the cross, He would have taken that way. Yet He did His Father’s will.

How often do we go to God and remind Him that all things are possible with Him and how often do we insist on our way, the way of freedom from suffering? What we don’t know is that a legacy of glory can only come through obedience, and obedience always leads to the cross because we can only accomplish obedience through the cross. If we want to leave a Jesus kind of legacy, we can only do it the Jesus way:  by saying yes when we want to say no — yes to the cross and no to self.

7. Jesus was a faithful man.

That’s what Jesus was saying in John 17:1-12:  “I did your will. In other words, “I have been faithful, Father, to all you wanted me to do.” This is why He could ask to receive His glory back, the very glory He had before the world was. Think of how much that glory meant to Him and how much His self-humiliation cost Him as He entered into a state that was not natural for Him as God.  He stepped into a world scarred by sin, darkened by the destructive power of evil, and became subordinate to His own creatures. He who made everything, who had the power to command legions of angels, chose to limit His power and subject Himself to the very ones He came to deliver. That is how He could claim His legacy of glory.

Jesus shows us how to leave a true legacy, a legacy of glory, His glory, not ours. If, by His grace, we become humble, dependent, proven, focused, persevering, obedient, and faithful men and women who focus our lives on making the Father known to those He gives to us, we will leave a legacy of glory. Not our glory, but His, the glory He wants to give to the Father through us.

What greater legacy could we leave?