Friday, August 16, 2013

10 year Tribute to my Dad

This past Monday, marked ten years since my father passed away. My mother and I were at his bedside when he passed away. Never had I experienced something like that. I felt and breathed my father's last breaths. I was thirteen, about to turn fourteen the month of his death. My high school years I tried to move forward with life, accepting that I was okay but never fully grieving what had happened to our family. During my first year of college, second semester I started grieving for him like never before. The reality that I had loss of a significant part of my life really hit me. Maturity also brought on the grieving process. God helped me to heal and work through the pain I was dealing with.

If you'd like to read a Father's day blog post from June 2010 of my childhood memories of my Dad
click here:

On Monday, I called my Mom and we talked about our memories of dad. She shared with me many special things, some I never heard about before. Growing up I admired how my dad was godly and mission minded. Mom shared with me how he would witness to his family (they were non-Adventist), and took his mother to all of Kenneth Cox's evangelistic meetings in Bowling Green, Ky. That was a significant amount of driving from where we lived (about an hour away). At the end of the series she was convicted on the truth of the state of the dead and had a deeper appreciation for the Adventist message. His father and brother came to know the truth as well. He witnessed to his patients, and went the extra mile to visit them in their homes and minister to their social, physical, and spiritual needs. He always had  huge stack of paperback Spirit of prophecy books in the library. I remembered the times he went witnessing to a jail sharing the books. At the end of our conversation I told my Mom that because of the union of Mom and Dad's marriage, God blessed them! And he did, because the fruits of their marriage influenced their children to grow to love and share Jesus.

August 12, will always be a significant day for our family. For two reasons, the death of my father and second, the anniversary of my brother and sister-in-law, Norman and Joelle. They married in 2007. The day has a second beautiful meaning. Though our family lost a very important part of who we are, he gave us a beautiful gift and blessing of Norman's marriage to Joelle, and their two lovely daughters. We are blessed!!

I always want to remember the legacy my father lived of full commitment to God, sacrifice, and how he shared His faith with others unashamedly. My daily desire is to be ready for Jesus' return, so that I may see my father again one day soon!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Praying for Divine appointments

I want to share about a spiritual divine appointment that happened a couple of months ago. One of my best friends and I attended the university church and ran into a visitor. I was waiting for my friend in the lobby, a lady came up to me and asked what time the services started. I could tell that she was a non-Adventist. When my friend arrived to the church service, we sat by the lady. She thanked us for sitting me her and after the sermon we tried to engage her in spiritual topics, and sought a way to potentially meet with her again. It has been difficult to maintain consistent contact, yet it is heartwarming to see how she is searching for the truth through the Adventist church and attending functions within the community. This experience taught me how important it is to be mindful of the spiritual needs of those searching for truth. There is a mission field all around us, even within an heavily populated Adventist community!
This poses an important question for us, and personally for my daily walk. Am I praying for divine appointments to minister to people around me needing spiritual support or connection? Paul counsels us in Ephesians 6:18, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication of all saints." How often I have missed appointments to minister to the spiritual needs of those around me because of my ignorance. It could be as simple as leaving GLOW tracks on benches in stores or at the gas pump, or being mindful of opportunities to engage in spiritual conversations with strangers.

Last evening, I was watching ASI, with Justin Kim giving the evening message. He spoke about the story of Nicodemus, and how he was ashamed to have a public relationship with Jesus and would meet with him at midnight. He brought some interesting observations from the story, and applied it to us as Adventists. Are we ashamed to share our faith with others, talk about Him with others, or stand up for truth (for example, at a professional board meeting). We are living in the last days, and need to be bold as Adventists about sharing our faith with others if we expect Jesus to come soon.

This blog post is a challenge to myself, to prioritize my daily activities to reach out to the community around me, uplift Christ to others, and be mindful of and pray for divine appointments.