I learned as a newborn Christian that observing the life of a faithful Christ follower encouraged me in my walk. God blessed me with a man worthy of my admiration. “It is the greatest joy of my life to hear that my children are consistently living their lives in the ways of truth” (3 John 1:4 TPT). Blessed are those who have a good example to follow. Who comes to mind in your life?
This man of God pastored multiple churches over his life after coming to terms with our Lord and Savior at an early age. Though many serve the Lord graciously and faithfully through thick and thin, Bob has done so with enthusiasm and grace for as long as I have known him, and his portrayal of Christ makes it difficult for one to deny Him. “But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods of your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD” (Joshua 24:15 NIV).
Several years ago Bob retired from active ministry and moved closer to me. Unfortunately, he has lost his eyesight and hearing and lives in a retirement community, a scaled-down version of what he was not so long ago. Regardless of his challenges, not a day goes by when Bob does not pay tribute to life and engage in good conversation. Never before have I witnessed such appreciation for a good meal received with gratitude. Bob does what he can to stay physically active. Despite having a bad hip from a fall several years ago, he walks often, trying to stay active and fit.
Bob exemplifies what a good father and husband should be. He treats his wife with grace and applauds her daily as they share their remaining years. His respect and demeanor toward her sets a high bar and exemplifies our Lord’s love for the church. Their commitment to each other is unwavering and beautiful.
Bob is my father-in-law, a man who surely makes Jesus smile. Sometimes we complicate life and take even our basic senses for granted, like seeing and hearing. How can a social and faithful man who devoted his life to God’s work be deprived in his last years from what is most needed to connect with others? It is a mystery to me, but I will tell you this, Bob is as faithful today as he was thirty-five years ago when I met him.
It has become clearer to me why wisdom is a respecter of age, “Wisdom belongs to the aged and understanding to the old” (Job 12:12 NLT). I hope that you, regardless of your age, seek a Godly example and cherish his or her presence. “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end…” (Lamentations 3:22 ESV). Whom do you admire?
Rob Wood, Deacon