This week I had the pleasant surprise of seeing an old friend I went to Bible College with. What a joy it was to see and catch up with him. It feels as though just yesterday we were a couple of young, single college guys with hopes & aspirations for ministry, and frankly, aspirations to each find a beautiful girl to marry & start a family with. How times have changed, as we are now both serving in local churches, married to God-fearing women, and raising multiple children. In our reminiscing together I have been reminded of two key truths that have profoundly affected our lives over the past 10 years and I believe will continue to affect our lives moving forward.
The first is this: God is faithful to imperfect people. I have had a lot of hard lessons to learn over the past decade. There have been times where I have lacked humility and teachability. There have been times where decisions I’ve made have been about me and not about God’s glory… and yet, God has not given up on me, and He continues to work in and through my life. In Philippians 1:6 the apostle Paul tells His Philippian friends, “I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” God does not give up on His people, but rather He continues to faithfully work in and though their lives, and He will be faithful in doing so until the day Christ returns for them.
The second is this: We must always watch our lives and doctrine. In 1 Timothy 4:16 Paul tells Timothy, a young pastor in training: “Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.” While I celebrated God’s faithfulness with my old friend, as we reminisced about the college days there was also a sense of sadness as we realized together that some of our old college friends are currently struggling. They have pain in their lives that is a result of either not submitting to God’s Word and/ or accepting a distortion of God’s Word. They did not watch their life and doctrine closely and untruths have lead to painful results. I am sorrowful for them and pray that God would lead them in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24).
The past 10 years flew by faster than I could have imagined & I suppose the next 10 years will not be much different, if not faster. Looking ahead, I know by His Word that God will continue to be faithful & by His Word I know I must continue to be watchful.