April 27 2021
Today, Tuesday April 27
A Tribute to a Wonderful Friend Romans 16:1-16 A friend loves at all times….. A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 17:17 & 18:24)
Remember yesterday I mentioned that in this last chapter of Romans, Paul took the time to greet at least twenty-six individuals by name that he knew in Rome. Paul was a friend-maker as much as he was a soul-winner.
I am so thankful that the Lord has blessed me with so many wonderful friendships over the years. I want to take the time to pay tribute to one of the dearest friends that I’ve had in ministry these past almost fifty years.
When I came to Rainbow Forest Baptist Church twenty-five years ago, one of the first staff member to greet me and help me get settled was the church administrator George Young. Over the course of time we developed a close friendship. I always knew George had my back, genuinely cared for me and my family, was loyal, was thoughtful and considerate, and would do anything he could to help me be a better person and a better pastor.
A couple months ago George went to Duke University Hospital for test to see if anything at all could be done to help his breathing problem that he has had these past number of years. He called and ask me if I could pick him up and bring him back home when he was released. I felt so privilege to do so and have this special time with him.
Shortly after he got in the car he informed me that the doctors told him they could not find the cause of the problem and that there was nothing they could do to cure it. But that it was possible that some medicines would at least make him more comfortable with it. George was positive and his faith was strong and he assured me that he was ready to go be with his Lord and Savior. As always, George was always thinking of others and his main regret was he wanted to be here and help his precious wife, Nancy who had just been diagnosed with cancer, go through her treatments.
We all need friends like George. We will all greatly miss him, and as sad as it was to say goodbye to him yesterday, we were also able to rejoice and celebrate his home-going to heaven. George was ready to meet his Lord and Maker because years ago he by faith had trusted Jesus Christ to be his personal Savior and had make peace with God.
Its times like yesterday that make the book of Romans come alive! This passage fits George and his suffering and passing perfectly! Romans 5:1-5 “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”
We love you George. We will miss you and look forward to that glorious day when we will see you again!!!!
Friends, please join me in prayer for Nancy and his family!