Monday, August 10, 2009

Success Is Relative

I have never enjoyed or been more excited about my ministry than I am right now. At this point in my life and career as a preacher of the Gospel, I am busier, working harder, and feel more fulfilled about my job than ever before. I think I understand my purpose better, I know how to do what needs to be done, and I see more lives growing in Christ than any time in the past thirty-five years of full-time ministry. I am excited about what God is doing in our church family, I see more possibilities and opportunities for growth in the future, and our church family has the best chance of really being the kind of loving, growing, and Christ-like group God really wants His people to be.
I don't share that to brag. It's humbling to see what God is doing in our life. I share that to simply make the point that even with all those wonderful things going on in our life and with all the success and potential success that God may give us - it's still not the most important thing I've done in my life.
After having our family with us this past week and seeing how much they love each other as husband and wife, parent and child, and siblings and in-laws, and seeing how much they love God, glorify Him, and are growing in Jesus and raising their children to love Him, well - how do you put a value on knowing your loved ones are faithful children of God? What is it worth to hear your grandchildren singing spiritual songs of praise, saying prayers that are simple, pure, and from the heart, and how do you put a price on hearing your adult children discuss how they can best be of service to God. What does it mean when the hurt of having to move farther apart is softened and bearable because it's what needs to happen for the work of the Lord.
We had our chance to be parents. It's not our job now. But when we were parents of children, it was a high priority, and we will never regret the time and effort that went into raising them in the "nurture and admonition of the Lord." I feel pretty sure that when all is said and done, it will be our greatest work. Now they're teaching us.

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