"Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." (ESV)
One of the primary reasons why I am attending my Grandfather's funeral in Montana is in order to consider the outcome of his way of life. He faithfully served God for the extent of his life, and I desire to see how God has used him in the lives of others.
I need to see and consider his outcome of life in order that I might follow his example. Last summer we celebrated with them their 65th wedding anniversary. What an evidence of God's grace in their lives - to bring together two people and keep them together for sixty-five years! Crystal and I have been married for 2 years and 11 months, but I pray that I will learn from and live by his example in order that we may enjoy at least 62 years and one month more.
My childhood of growing up as a son of a pastor was a great experience, and I assume that it was the same for my father's childhood. My grandfather was a pastor for the majority of my father's life, and yet that did not deter him from entering the ministry as it does with so many others. It also is significant that not only my father, but both of his brothers have become pastors as well.
I need to see and consider his outcome of life in order that I may be strengthened in my life. Ministry is hard at times, and to see someone who faithfully ministered throughout his entire life is a great encouragement. Hebrews 12 encourages believers to take strength from those who have gone before in order that they may run the race that is set before them. Some stepped out in faith to head to a new land, some stepped up to face the battle, some stepped down from their positions of prominence in order to follow God. Some were beaten, many were killed, but this world was unworthy of them all. My Grandfather was a man who has joined the ranks of men who have gone before. His testimony encourages me to run this race.
I need to see and consider his outcome of life in order that I may seek to know Christ more. As I contemplate the work of Christ in the life of my Grandfather, it gives me the desire to know Him more. Jesus Christ completely transformed his life for I was able to see the fruits of the Spirit in his life (Gal. 5:22-23), something which is completely out of reach for the unbeliever (John 15:5). What God was able to do in and through him baffles the mind. Truly the Gospel of Christ is the power of God.
I need to see and consider his outcome of life in order that I may rejoice in his present condition (2 Timothy 4:7-8). I would be a fool not to be jealous (Phil. 1:23).