Living for Christ

Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!

This past weekend Vicki and I went over to Oklahoma.  We went to celebrate the 80th birthday of her Dad, Bob Smith.  We celebrated two days early, because we felt that it would be best for all the family trying to get there.

            We had the celebration at First Baptist Church in Medford where Bob had pastored and now attends.  Actually he is preaching some even now since they are currently looking for a pastor.  It was the perfect spot since they live only a short distance from the church.

            Bob has pastored in the area since they moved there from Carnegie, Oklahoma when Vicki was just a freshman in high school.  He pastored my home church in Wakita, as well as Nash, Lamont and of course Medford.  He was a bi-vocational pastor while he worked for the Soil Conservation District there in Medford.

            He is known all over Grant county because of the work that he did for the government and as a pastor.  Yet his impact goes to the surrounding counties because of the work he has done as a pastor.

            God has used him to speak to many about their relationship with Jesus.  I cannot tell you how many people he has had the opportunity to lead to Christ.  I have seen him weep for those who did not know Jesus and rejoice with those who accepted Christ.  I have seen him tirelessly share the Good News of Christ with people.

            He has been involved in working with the Salt Fork Baptist Association of churches.  He led out in helping bring them to work together to accomplish the mission efforts within the association.  The first time I asked him to preach for me here in Pampa he said that he always wanted to do mission work in Texas!

            After growing up outside of Noble, Oklahoma then moving to southwest Oklahoma, God moved him to Medford.  As I considered the work that Bob has done, I realized that he is fulfilling the call God gave him years ago.  He surrendered to God’s call in his life and regardless of where he was he sought to be the man of God he had been called to be.

            As Vicki and I drove home Saturday evening, I began to think about this man I have always called Bro. Bob.  I considered the man he was and the example he has set for so many people.  I thought about the times we spent talking about sermons we were preaching and what we were doing for special occasions.

            I realized that much like the Apostle Paul walked with Timothy; Bro. Bob has walked with me.  I have been able to talk with him about ministry opportunities as well as ministry issues.  I am thankful for his help in ministry.

            I also realize that Bro. Bob surrendered his life to Christ and sought to live the way God would have him live.  This made me consider what Paul wrote to the church in Philippi.

            In Philippians 1:21-24 Paul wrote -- 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 But if I am to live on in the flesh, this will mean fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which to choose. 23 But I am hard-pressed from both directions, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better; 24 yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake.

            I believe that this is one thing that Bro. Bob would say about his life.  He would be quick to say that he has not done everything well, but his greatest desire has been to serve the Lord.

            With Paul he would say -- 20 I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. (Gal. 2:20).

            I am so thankful that God brought Bro. Bob into my life.  Not only because I was able to meet Vicki, but also because He gave me a man of God that helped me along the way.  I can truthfully say that he has fulfilled the quote by William Channing – “May your life preach more loudly than your lips.”

            Bro. Bob continues to live for Christ and honor Him in all he does.  “Thanks Bro. Bob.  You have done well.”  Question now is – Will we live for Jesus?

JESUS, JESUS, JESUS, there IS something about that name!

Christ only, always,

Bro. Paul