The Greatest Ingredient For a Life of Legacy Honoring the unheralded big mentors of our times

Today, if I mention the name Donald Matheny not very many people who read Life Signatures will be familiar to that name. Yet that individual has impacted lives in the millions over nearly the past half of a century. You see, his Legacy might be unknown to many people (in comparison with the popular), but his DNA goes round around the world wherever the lives he has impacted go.

I grew up in rural Western Kenya for the better part of my childhood. After my dad lost a job working for a corporation, we retreated back to the village where we spoke broken Swahili for long because we did not have time to learn the local dialect, neither did we cherish it that much. I walked barefoot for a decade before joining High School. Immediately after that, my 18 year old self encountered the person of Donald Matheny at the City Stadium in Nairobi. My life since then has never been the same.

One word for him: Faithful

The bulk of what I know in terms of spirituality, leadership, passion, purpose and personal development is a result of sitting under the tutelage of Donald Matheny, the Senior Pastor at Nairobi Lighthouse Church. In my 7 years as a member there, I attended myriads of classes including “Foundations”, “School of Leadership”, “The Encounter”, and so on. Still today, NLC has a yearlong leadership class titled “Insight” that is an upgrade of the aforementioned classes.

My Impact, His Legacy

Ten years later, I have interviewed over 1,000 people in 3 African countries and raised 4 different field teams. I have written over 300 articles and authored books. I have “Life Coached” hundreds of individuals. I have impacted people in the thousands one way or another. In all those “achievements” please do not ever forget the DNA of Donald Matheny in me. If you ever see anything commendable in my life in terms of character, passion, focus and direction, this barefooted boy who was destined for obscurity in the village learnt it when his path interlocked with that of a visionary in the name of Donald Matheny.

Now, this is just one person in the names of Lawrence Namale who has been impacted and who is in turn impacting others. NLC is a 7,000 strong church at any one point in time, or even more. Each of the members have been impacted by this visionary one way or another, and they have his DNA in terms of legacy. That is an interesting observation, because Your legacy is not on how you were born. It has nothing to do with your genetic DNA, but everything to do with your heart, passion and purpose DNATwitter , which are shaped by other visionaries like Donald Matheny.

The interesting thing is that there are hundreds of thousands of people across the globe just like Donald Matheny. And there are millions of people across the globe just like Lawrence Namale. For every hundred thousandth random Donald Matheny, there is a Billy Graham. For every millionth Lawrence Namale, there is a Tony Robbins. My point is simple. Legacy is not a preserve of the high and mighty. Legacy is for us all.Twitter

True Legacy

However, True legacy is not in the domain of mortal man. True Legacy is an afterlife thing.Twitter  In other words, your legacy can never be fully measured by mortal men. Your true legacy can only be measured by the One who started it all in the first place—God Almighty. I believe He creates us all for the sole purpose of impacting other people, just like Donald Matheny keeps doing. But what is the one thing that describes such people?

If someone was to ask me to give just one word in describing “Pastor Don”, I would say this: Faithful.

It is more than 7 years since I sat under the tutelage of Donald Matheny, but if I were to go back today and attend his teachings, nothing will have changed in terms of passion, focus and energy. In fact the only change that I will see will be in terms of urgency. In other words, you can count on Donald Matheny to do what he was called to do each passing year.

The Answer is in our Faithfulness

That is how you build a legacy for the eternal. You remain faithful. Now, Pastor Don might never read this message or might never hear this gratitude from me. He might never have a two hour meeting with me so I can explain in full how his “faithfulness” has impacted my life, my wife, my kids and my “tribe worldwide”. But he still stays faithful to the call. He needs not get discouraged. He accepted his call well, stayed faithful with it and the rest as they say, is history.

Now, can you imagine a Lawrence Namale without a Donald Matheny? What if “Pastor Don” was never faithful to the call? I shudder to think about it, not just for him, but for the hundreds of thousands of people that have been impacted so far by his “Legacy DNA”.  

Lawrence Namale

What if there was no faithfulness?

Now, can you imagine a Lawrence Namale without a Donald Matheny? What if “Pastor Don” was never faithful to the call? I shudder to think about it, not just for him, but for the hundreds of thousands of people that have been impacted so far by his “Legacy DNA”.

If you searched Life Signatures for the word “Vision”, you will have the most returns of articles. Did you know where I first encountered the application of that word to an individual? I heard it from “Pastor Don”, and it gripped my heart, becoming my biggest pursuit in life ever. These days as a Life Coach, I teach people about vision and purpose, with the full DNA of Pastor Don’s spirit.

Keep At It.

My writing today is for everyone who is out there doing what they feel in their hearts of hearts as their calling. Some of you have never heard gratitude from people in a long while. In fact, some of you (like in the previous article) have heard lots of criticism. You ought not to give up. Did you know that “Pastor Don” was once called an Occultist Devil worship leader on a national newspaper? Still he moves along with his vision.

Stephen R. Covey admonished us to make sure that the ladder is leaning on the correct wall before we start climbing. So as long as you are sure in your hearts of hearts that what you are doing is what matters to you, and it is your calling, please stay faithful. Whether you are getting accolades from people is immaterial. Stay at it. Stay faithful. Your legacy is not for people to judge. It is for them to feel it, but in the end, it is God that will show you the full extent of what you did as you stayed faithful.

Pastor Don, your legacy will be spoken of the world over. All my generations will remember you. You stayed faithful. Thank you sir!

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Posted by Lawrence Namale

  • THIS! “his Legacy might be unknown to many people (in comparison with the
    popular), but his DNA goes round around the world wherever the lives he
    has impacted go.” Agree 100percent. I am one of those goers – him and Ms Amy (and those they poured into who in turn poured into us) left this undeniable mark. What a great read and tribute!

    • James Bukachi

      He was a major instrument of God in my life, in the foundations I received as a member and serving in the sister ministry to NLC, CMM. Very true of Rev. Don Matheny. Hi impact to the lives of many a man and a woman, unknown to many. We thank God and Celebrate him for answering a call to come and impact this nation and beyond by the the never changing, everlasting, eternal and transformational Word of God.

  • Benta Ogutu

    Heh Lawrence, This piece is priceless! Thanks for honoring my spiritual father and so rightfully according him the same. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to different offices and heard someone say of my presentation or service, ‘that’s Pr. Don’s training. His mark of true leadership skills and spirit of excellence in display in the market place’.