A legacy is an incredible reality.
We will all leave one.
It’s something handed down from an ancestor or predecessor, someone from the past. There’s no qualifier as to the quality of what is being handed down.
That rests solely with the character of the one who is leaving something behind.
To leave a legacy of value, one worthy of remembrance, a person would need to live a life that positively impacts others.
Vonette Bright was such a person.
A woman of compassion, conviction, inner strength and gentle southern charm, Vonette, with her husband, Bill, co-founded an organization committed to sharing the Good News of Jesus with the world. Their desire to give every person on earth the chance to know Jesus had been a compelling motivation for living their faith out loud. With hope for what God would do.
Bill entered heaven’s joy twelve and a half years ago.
Vonette, faithful and full of faith till the end, made that same journey December 23.
She made it home for Christmas.
Many will miss this dear woman. Many who’ve been touched by her kindness and gentle love. Many who’ve watched her walk of faith and have found it genuine.
It was a privilege knowing her.
I had the chance years ago, walking up and down the hills at Arrowhead Springs, to meet Vonette. I was pregnant and trying hard to relax in the California heat. We stopped to talk as she walked with her mom. Lively conversation that had her asking questions about my family and our hope for what God would do through us in the ministry of Cru.
She never forgot that encounter. Or the conversation.
As we ran into each other over the years, she’d remember that time in California. And would ask about family. And me.
She remembered people. Because people always mattered to her.
She would always send lovely, personal thank you letters when she was given something, no matter how small or incidental. It was important to let others know that their thoughtfulness meant something to her.
She was a woman of gratitude.
She loved her husband dearly. Has missed him greatly. Their marriage was an inspiration to so many who are in situations where both spouses have very busy lives.
She was a generous-hearted, loving woman.
She pushed against cultural norms. Working tirelessly with and beside her husband. Launching a world-wide prayer movement because it was what she felt God was leading her to do. Traveling alone to various countries to meet with and build into women in ministry. She wasn’t afraid to try things that hadn’t been done. Failure was an opportunity to try again. To trust God. Again.
She was a woman of great faith.
She loved her family with great passion and commitment. Her two sons and their families were deeply interwoven into the tapestry of her heart.
She treated us all like family.
Her legacy? It’s one I’d love to pass on as my own. She’s left behind the reality of a woman who saw God’s faithfulness, who looked forward to see His promises. She celebrated His majesty and humbly served her King.
Vonette will be remembered for many things. Most of all, that she was a woman in love with her Lord.
Thank you for your faithfulness, Vonette. You leave us better for having known you.