A Life Well Lived – Wisdom Words for Hump Day

A Well Lived Life


It is with a heavy, but grateful heart that I post this blog today, for I just received word that my dear friend went home to the Lord at 3:00 am.  I was imageblessed to have spent most of yesterday with him and much of his family yesterday.  This blog was written yesterday prior to his death.

Today’s blog is a reflection about a dear friend, Charles who is currently transitioning from this life to the next.  He has been on my mind for days as I continue to grieve the hole he will leave in my heart and the footprints he has left on my soul.  He has taught me much since meeting him and his wife nine years ago and when drawn into his heart as family.

I am reminded of a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson:

image“The purpose of life is not to be happy.  It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, and to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

The quote is such an example of the life Charles led.  I never heard him once talk about how unhappy he was and there was always a big smile on his face, a warm embrace, and as he would often say “give me a little cheek” (so he could place a kiss on it).  He is an honorable man that has lived a prayer filled life, as a father, grandfather, math teacher, preacher, and pastor, but most of all a friend.


His life story as many of our own includes the struggles, memories, love, family, and discrimination.  But that is only a small part.  The bigger part of his story is about forgiveness, faith, surrender, obedience, passion, gratitude, and an unfailing love for the Lord and Papa God!  Charles story reflects all of

imagelife the ups and downs, but Charles always focused on the up part.  That is a lesson he has taught me.

Charles and his wife Frances are not only friends, they are family.  His family is our family.  He is living proof that family is about so much more than just blood.  Family is about loving, caring, teaching and challenging.  It is about sticking together or as Charles would say, “Having my back” in support of one another though it all.  It is about holding one another in prayer.   It is about surrounding one another with the love of God and truly believing all things are possible with a God who loves us.


Charles was also a singer.  He sang one of the lead roles in the local play, “Footprints in the Sands of Time”, which tells the faith journey of the African American People.  He wrote music and when he sang hymns either with others or solo, it could not help but resonate with one’s soul.  A song that he was often requested to sing at funerals what “Walking around Heaven!”

Charles will soon be doing just that!  As I write this there is a smile on my face because I can just see him there!  I always saw a glow about his face,

imageespecially when he was singing praises in church or in the plays in which he was involved; but the idea of his expression when he finally meets his maker overwhelms me.  Charles you have done well.  Your life has been well lived.  You are God’s good and trusted servant!  You have blessed the people who have known you more than you will ever know.  I will miss your presence, but will hold you in my heart forever. I love you!

(In addition to this blog you may learn more about Charles at www.leannethehermit.com/gratefultributes.)







Urban Hermit


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  1. Sharon Lyon

    Leanne, I am so sorry to hear of Charles’ death. We only met a couple of times and I thought he and Frances were wonderful people. Please give my condolences to her and let her know I will be praying for peace in her heart.

    That goes for you as well, as I know you considered Charles family. My heart goes out to you and all who loved him.

    God bless you all.

    Love, Sharon

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    1. urbanhermit Post author

      Thank you, Sharon, this has been difficult for me. His funeral is Saturday the 29th. It was difficult watching his failing health. I am just grateful he is no longer in pain.

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