Fred's funeral is today.
I will miss him.
I look forward to seeing him later.
He was one of my heroes.
He never wavered on Jesus; even when life's challenges tested him.
He never wavered on me; even when I did not practice what I preached.
Christians are like that.
They know we can be good; but never good enough not to need His delivering graces.
Fred knew God does not keep law and Gospel in balance; for Jesus proved He favors the Gospel side.
Bob, Eddie, Frank, and Fred were role models of ministry for me as elders in that New Jersey church over 30 years ago.
All but Eddie are now home with Jesus.
Eddie and I look forward to seeing them later.
So many have taught me so much about life and ministry.
More than less and less than more as happens to all of us, I've followed their counsel.
I only hope to pass on His goodness through them for me to others.
Dad taught me that most moral decisions are not made in the gray zone.
Whenever I think of Mom, I think of Lynyrd Skynyrd's Simple Man.
My sister proves faith and fun are part of the same fabric.
Dorothy urged, "Please tell people to tithe! If you don't, you'll be cheating them of the opportunity to experience the extraordinary blessings of obedience."
The Rev. Harold F. Mante, the first home pastor who caught my attention, exemplified agape; especially when it comes to church irregulars. He said, "Some people just need a little more understanding."
He also told me to never check church financial records or I'd develop unhealthy prejudices about people.
He also told me to never learn how to use church office equipment or...
I don't recommend too many "Christian" novels.
I figure people don't read the Bible enough to distinguish fact from fiction.
But Joseph Girzone's Joshua has always been a favorite; and here are a few lines which won't make it into too many sermons: "Jesus came to...free people from...regimented religion where people are threatened if they don't obey rules and rituals invented by the clergy...You have kept...Christian people away from one another and forced them to be loyal to your denomination rather than to Jesus...Church officials are concerned about order among the people, prophets are concerned about people's relationship with God...The church teaches beautiful things, but it is all on paper...The church is supposed to be the living presence of Christ..., but often all the people see is the aloofness and arrogance of ill-tempered shepherds who have little feeling for the people when they are hurting or when they have fallen."
I like Joshua.
Another good "Christian" novel is William Young's The Shack.
LuAnn just gave a copy to me; and I was struck by the hero who reminds me of other heroes in my life: "He doesn't say much unless you ask him directly, which most folks have learned not to do...He usually makes uncomfortable sense in a world where most folks would rather just hear what they are used to hearing, which is often not much of anything...And when he does talk,...they are not quite so satisfied with themselves."
I won't say too much more about it; because it's really worth your time.
It pushes you into the deep waters.
So many heroes in my life; and I'll mention more of them in forthcoming KDs.
They have one thing in common.
They dove into the deep waters; and after years of fear, I'm diving into...
Grandpa Hayden died many years ago; though I still wear the increasingly tattered robe which he bought when I picked up my last academic degree.
He called to say he was heading home to Jesus; and I said I'd fly to the hospital to see him.
He said, "That won't be necessary. When I die, then you'll come back and preside at the funeral; and then I'll see you later."
My heroes will always be in my heart; and in the time left which won't be as long as the time spent, I will pray and labor to prove I paid attention to them.
I find comfort in my Grandpa's last words to me; because I have such a hard time with good-byes.
I'll see you later, Fred.
Blessings and Love!