Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Farewell to a Friend

I am not somewhere in South America today. I am somewhere in South Mississippi. I am here with my wife's family. It's a sad time. It's also a joyful time. I guess that means it's a bittersweet time. What time is it? It's time to say goodbye to my wife's dad. He was my friend before he was my father-in-law. He was my patient mentor when I was a know-it-all preacher boy. That was over twenty-eight years ago.

As I look back at the past twenty-eight years of preaching ministry, when I see where I began, I see the fingerprints of a good man. My father-in-law/friend/mentor shows up in some of my preaching style today. To be sure, I have long since developed my own style; but this man showed me how to read a passage of Scripture for all it is worth. He gave me tools that have never grown dull, never worn out, never become useless.

Soon--very soon--we will say "farewell" to this good man. But it is really more like a "see you later." My father-in-law was sure and satisfied with his relationship to Jesus Christ. I am sure of mine. So one day we will see one another again.

His last words he intended to share with his church were these: I am saved, I am sure, and I am satisfied. Is there anything more fitting to ask the readers today? Are you saved? Are you sure you are saved? Are you satisfied? Is Jesus enough?

To God be the glory for a man who did what he could with what he had. He buried nothing in the ground; it was all used for the glory of God.

Somewhere in South Mississippi


GuyMuse said...

We rejoiced with you a couple of posts ago on the birth of Grace Elizabeth, and now we share your grief over the loss of a friend and loved one. May God's grace be upon you all these days. We pray that God's peace be upon the family there in MS.

J. A. Gillmartin said...

Precious in the sight of the LORD Is the death of His godly ones.
(Psalms 116:15)

Who can say it better than this!