Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Longer I Serve Him

I have been debating whether or not to write this post, but since I've decided to go ahead with it, I do hope that I can do it justice. 

He called me Jenny. 

No one has ever done that before and I still don't know how he got started doing it, yet somehow I didn't mind it too much coming from this gentle man.  Now he is gone and memories are swirling around in my head ... prayers he prayed, snatches of conversations, his ready smile and soft chuckle ... all good memories of a man that will be greatly missed.  There are two stories from the years I have known him that seem to keep coming up in my mind that just speak clearly to the life he lived.

When Ronnie became the Sunday School director for our church several years ago he decided that we needed to have teachers' meetings on a regular basis.  For the first couple of years we had prayer partners among the teachers.  The plan was for the partners to be secret until the end of the year, when we would reveal who we'd been praying for all year.  I will never forget when Bro. Jimmie told me that I was the one he had been praying for.  He told me that he took the card with my name on it and put it on the mirror in his bathroom and prayed for me each day.  Every day, for a whole year.  I was amazed and I was convicted.  I wouldn't be able to look at the person I had been praying for and speak those words to them.  Their card had been in my Bible and I prayed for them each time I came across the card, but I knew that I had not been the faithful prayer warrior for my partner that Bro. Jimmie had been for me.  As I sit here, typing these words and picturing Bro. Jimmie in my mind, I can hear bits of prayers that I have heard him pray over the last ten and a half years ... prayers for peace and comfort and healing, and I am incredibly thankful to know that he lifted my name up to our Father.

Just a few weeks ago our choir began working on the song The Longer I Serve Him.  When we finished singing through it the first time our choir director had a questioning look on his face as he looked at Bro. Jimmie ... as we had sung the song, he had cried.  A few years ago I don't think I would have truly understood the significance of his tears, but I do now.  This song meant so much to him because he lived it every day.  He could attest to the truth of the words that are only just beginning to take on real meaning to me. 

The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows. 
The more that I love Him, more love He bestows. 
Each day is like heaven, my heart overflows. 
The longer I serve Him, the sweeter He grows.

Bro. Jimmie wasn't with us on Sunday morning when the choir sang this song in church.  Beginning Sunday evening and for all of eternity, this gentleman, who impacted my life in such a powerful way, is experiencing the reward for a life lived in devoted service to his King.  I cannot mourn for him, but I will miss him and I can look forward to seeing him again one day. 

But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.  For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.  1 Thessalonians 4:13-18


signingcharity said...

beautiful post. may your heart be comforted as you miss your friend.

Greg and Donna said...

Praying for you friend!

Felicity said...

What a beautiful post, Jennifer! Praying that the Lord will comfort you.

Donna said...

What a beautiful way to remember your prayer warrior and friend...Praying for you!