I was given some of my brother’s preaching on CD for Christmas. I listened to one of his messages a couple weeks ago. It was bittersweet. Hearing his voice and knowing it is in a kind of time capsule was difficult, but the most difficult was listening to the message and actually hearing the words.
Matt told a story about a young man at Shoney’s who was obviously in some sort of distress, sitting all alone at a table where he was clearly waiting for someone. The conversation between my brother and this young man eventually turned to faith, and the young man asked if it was worth leaving everything behind to follow God. My brother passionately described what was going on in his head at that very minute. He screamed, “yes!” He also used his infamous phrase, “Is a frog’s hiney watertight?”
I didn’t leave much behind when I trusted in Christ. I did so at the age of five, and really, what kind of life can you possibly leave behind at that age?! But, I cannot imagine what my life would be like if I hadn’t trusted in Christ and went through life. Where would I be? I probably would not even be a coffee loving blogger. I can speculate exactly where I would be because I still fight with myself and Satan on a daily basis to choose truth.
I was devastated when my brother chose, for a season, to walk away from the faith he held so tightly to for another season of his life, especially as a pastor. I watched the heartache and anger it caused. I prayed and fought my own heart to not become angry and bitter. I fought to not fall in line with him because he was so important to my faith journey.
Partially motivated by my brother’s descent and partially by my own faith, a faith very different from Abraham’s, I am choosing to walk a different path. A path that is not easy for me, but at the end of my life, however long that may be, I want to believe my life has been worth something. Not just choose to avoid the sin but to choose the extraordinary.
My brother referenced 2 Samuel 23. The passage is about a man who stood alone in the field fighting an army of Philistines. God gave him great victory that day. This man did something extraordinary.