Attended a funeral today for a man who was the father of a friend of mine. I knew Bernard from the late 70's.
This man had been a soldier, a husband, a father, a grand father and a pastor. What struck me the most is that this man had been ministering to people for 60 years; faithfully serving smaller congregations, families, couples and individuals. He had been there through the good times and the bad times, through times when there was joy - the birth of a new child, a marriage, graduation - and through times when there was sorrow - relational stresses, death of a child, a marriage that dissolves, health issues. He spoke at my high school graduation and was near the Fisk family a few days later when their daughter, who just graduated, drowned at a graduation party.
He saw many things and carried many burdens with people through his 60 years of ministry. Up until the end of his life, he was ministering to people at the assisted living place he was staying. He talked to me a few times about visiting an old neighbor of mine who was living in the same place he was. His desire to care and pastor and to teach the words of life from the scriptures never left him.
Thanks Bernard, for a life example of faithfulness. Thanks for being true to God and holding forth his words as the word of life. Thanks for a job well done. Rest in peace and enjoy walking with your Savior and your God.