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Living with the End in Mind

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.”1

One night Diane Sawyer was interviewing Billy Graham on ABC News. She asked the question, “Billy, when you die, how do you want people to remember you?” Billy said, “I don’t know what people will think of me, but what I’d really like is to hear the Lord say to me when I get to Heaven, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’” Then he paused and looked at her and said, “But I don’t think that He will.”2

We would think that if anyone was going to hear this statement from God, it would be Billy Graham. But what I think Dr. Graham meant was that while what we do for God is important, loving God for who he is is considerably more important and significant that what we do for God.

I don’t know who first coined the phrase/s, “Living with the end in mind” and “Living life backwards.” But the idea is that if what we want said of us at the end of life’s journey—especially by God when we stand before him face to face—we need to clearly define our God-given life purpose today. And then we need to start living now to ensure that we fulfill this purpose. That is, we need to live life with the end of it in mind.

So my question to you, Dear Reader, is this: “When you die, how do you want people to remember you and what do you want God to say to you?”

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, please help me to clearly define my God-given life purpose and what I want to hear you say to me when I die—and help me to start living today with this end in mind. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen.”

Note: If you are not sure of your eternal situation, be sure to read the article, “How to Be Sure You’re a Real Christian” at:

1. 2 Corinthians 5:10 (NIV).
2. Dr. John Ankerberg,


All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.