Today was a glorious day for pilgrims who follow Jesus in that one of the tres dias disciples was feted with a going away celebrating his life. Craig Mengel was a follower of Jesus and he followed Him. Keeping God first in his life and all the struggles that he faced. So as many said of Chester, the name given by the disease that he faced with courage.
It is a sad day for horse racing fans who hoped that Big Brown was going to win a triple crown. He lost and finished last. No triple crown for him.
As I was chatting with my friend and brother in Christ, Ted, I linked the triple crown of hope and joy and peace. As I was reminded, we are called by Timothy to run the race that is set before us and to do so with perserverence and determination. We all get hoof splits in our life. Enamel and glue may not always make them better. We may limp through life, but it is great to have a wide body of believers to connect to.
This morning as I was sharing with my friend. Dan who is off to Israel this evening to study in seminary of Jesus and architecture. It is an exciting time for him. And to be able to connect with Bill who is involved in local men's ministry and to chat of a possible speaking engagement at my local church.
And I connected with a man who is the son of one of our former pastors and who had my senior pastor when he was our youth pastor. So, it is a small world connected by many believers in our midst.
Henry Nouwen had words of encouragement in one of his devotionals of how people strive for external beauty and acceptance. But we all face our limitations. That indeed takes real courage.. We do have to face our mortality, but the great thing is that God is immortal and we can cloak ourselves with that immortality. So when we are swallowed up by death, its sting is not felt. It becomes our release into the next life. And that is what happened to Craig. He was given a one way ticket to heaven. With its price already paid for. As Bill Carlucici shared this morning, we all must take the bullet for Christ. Being willing to stand up for Him against what the culture pits against us.
At a celebratory service of a christian brother, Craig mengel who faced a terminal disease and even lymphona, he accepted it. He had a strong faith and knew when his time was up. And he smiled through the end. As the children;s song states, we can smile in the storm with Jesus in our boat.
So, get ready to row your boat to help others cross the shore to eternal life. equipping them with the tools they will need.
ANCHORS AWAY. RAISE UP THE ANCHORS AND CROSS SAFELY TO THE SHORE. FOR ONE'S TIME ON LIFE IS UP AND THE LOVE AND TESTIMONY OF OTHERS ARE THE REPLACEMENT FOR THOSE LEFT BEHIND.
And I was blessed to spend time sharing my story with one of Craig's friends as I got a ride up to the service and shared of my struggles and triumphs. And was blessed to have a chat with pastors of a local church in Bridgeport on the way home. All with the confidence and no anxiety that God provides. Jehovah Jirah.
So back to the main point of the encouraging word for the day. Let us throw off all that hinders us from winning the triple crown which will be our rewards in heaven. Let us cast our crowns at the feet of Him as we walk this path of our earthly sufferings ,
De colores to Craig and Amazing grace to all who read these words of comfort and praise.