Friday, August 7, 2009

Godly Influence & A Tombstone (Part 2)

In my last post I had mentioned how my grandfather in both his life and then in his death made a huge impact upon my spiritual life and I want to wrap up my thoughts on the impact a visit to his tombstone made upon my life.

A few months after his death, God was most definitely at work within my 17 year old heart. I was being challenged by a youth pastor to give it all to God and through a series of events with friends felt like I needed to make a decision on whether or not I was going to give myself to a life of following this Jesus I had grown up with or dabble with another life path. On one particularly low day, I ended up at my grandfather's tombstone. His was a life I admired and for some reason I felt as though I may gain some insight with a visit to the cemetery.

One of the things I have come to appreciate about both of my grandfather's tombstones is that they have Scripture on them. There is no fancy man made poems or thoughts, just Biblical truth that brings hope. On this particular visit to my one grandfather's tombstone, I was hit with three simple words "Awaiting the Shout" (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). To a casual onlooker, these three words don't mean much but they hit me like a ton of bricks that day. The Bible speaks very clearly to the real and living hope we have as Christ followers because of the truth that for those who have trusted Christ as their Savior, there is coming a day when He will return and raise up those who have died in Him and take us with Him to our eternal home.

It was on that day looking at those words that I realized there is no better way to live this life than to follow hard after the One (Christ) who loved me enough to not just save me from my sins, but give me a living hope that I will see Him face to face and live with Him forever. I committed that day to be an individual who walks this earth looking forward to the "shout" rather than fearing it.

There is power in God's living Word (the Bible) and my prayer is that for all who read this blog they too are "awaiting the shout" with great anticipation rather than fear and/or confusion. I give thanks for the godly influence my grandfather provided in both his life and even in his death.

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