Grace years

Last Friday I spent a few minutes at the Wilmington area “Relay for Life” with my daughter Blair and some close friends who are survivors of cancer.  At this venue were thousands of luminaries, each one representing someone who died due to the blight of cancer.  To say the least, it was a sobering experience; an experience which tends to make you re-evaluate priorities, desires, etc. 

I am approaching 48 years old; that can be sobering as well.  I didn’t say depressing…I said sobering.  Getting older doesn’t scare me or depress me at all…as a matter of fact, the older I get the more excited I get, knowing that this sin laden life will be gone…forever…no longer will I struggle with the flesh.  More than that, I will be in the very presence of Jesus.  I’m sure that that sounds trite and unoriginal to many, but I could not be more thoughtful in saying it.  The thought of being with the one I treasure makes all other things pale in comparison…seriously. 

Even though I’m not freaked out over the thought of nearing fifty, I am a bit burdened by it.  I am burdened, thinking of all the self-absorption, disobedience, and wasted time over those 47 plus years.   How much time have I wasted…how much have I focused on myself?  I know better.
 If God sees fit to allow me to live the average life span then I have about another 20-25 years.  In the grand scheme of things that’s not very long.  My overwhelming desire is to live every moment of the time I have left for the glory of my gracious God… I want to be consumed with Jesus.  God has stripped away things from me, even spiritual seeming things, to the point where there’s nothing left but Him…it’s taken nearly 50 years…

I don’t want to spend the years I have left pleasing the flesh…the thought of that sickens me.  I am completely satisfied in Christ; nothing else can satisfy like my Savior.  So if that means working as a bi-vocational pastor…so be it.

I will pour my efforts into glorifying God in that job and introducing people to Him through that job.  If that means being the pastor to a handful of people then so be it.  I will love those people and thank God that He has allowed me the overwhelming privilege to minister to them.  If He takes that away so be it.  I will love my incredible family and strive to model Christ’s love for His church.  I want my mind to be set on Jesus at every moment… I will not allow other things; temporal things to capture me.

Every second of life is a gift from the giver of life…to be used to give Him glory and enjoy Him.  God grant me a few more years to do that…better than the past.

Therefore…  “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain”. 
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One thought on “Grace years

  1. Joey, this is awesome. Thank you so much for sharing it. Yep….getting older is indeed sobering! I'm trying to subscribe to your blog but cannot locate the link for it? Mine is http://www.thebeggarsbaker.wordpress.com if you want to check it out. Again, thank you for posting this. Have a BLESSED day!

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