Now that I am old enough to be a retired great grandfather, I find myself reflecting on my life almost as much as I reflect upon God's Word. I remember when I knew just about everything. I was bold and outspoken, unafraid to witness to anyone about the Lord Jesus. I painted the back of my brand new VW camper with a very large "HONK IF YOU LOVE JESUS" with the Name Jesus larger and in the shape of the fish. On the front, I had a tire cover made that said, "JESUS" in large letters surrounded by the words "THE ONLY PEACE." It was 1972 and I was in the Navy. Every day, I would drive in and out of the base proclaiming to protesters and military alike that, even though we were involved in Viet Nam and everyone was ready for peace, the only true peace is found in Christ. My wife and I Bible studies in our home every Friday night (we had asked a Christian couple to come teach us), and about twenty people came to learn about Him. We were full with a love for God and His Word. We sacrificed to make sure our children went to a Christian school, and we all were in church three times a week or more.
What happened to that young couple? There is no Bible study, no large proclamations on our vehicles, and our children are old enough to have grand children, most of whom preoccupied with life and have little time for the things of the Lord. They all claim to be believers, and I have no reason to doubt them. But unfortunately all I have to verify their relationship with the Lord is their word. We have no fellowship with most of them, and it is quite clear that asking about church would be a mistake. It is hard being the father to so many prodigals. Keeping silent and waiting for them to "return" is almost unbearable.
I guess what happened to us is life. Frustrations with health, jobs, bills, and neighbors are nothing compared to dealing with family members who know it all, just like I thought I did a lifetime ago. I wonder, was I that unteachable and aloof? I suspect that I was, and for that, I apologize to all my family who had to tolerate me. All that, coupled with carnal church members and pastors over the years, and a world that would rather hear about Oprah or Tiger than Jesus, and one simply gets tired. Just as when Jesus cried out, "Jerusalem, Jerusalem..." in frustration, I cry out, "Family, Family." I have failed as the head of them.
Another thing that humbles me is God's Word. Though I have been to Bible College and Seminary and have had years of Bible study, there is more about His Word that I don't understand than what I do. I do not understand the Trinity; why Jesus was said to be crucified on Good Friday; how the Church went from 3,000 united as one to thousands of denominations; most of the symbolism in the Prophets; and what is taking Him so long to return! The older I get, the less I seem to know. The one thing I do know for sure is that when He returns for me, whether in the Rapture or through death, I will be changed into His likeness (1 John 3:2) praise the Lord!!! Come again, Lord Jesus!