“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith...”
(Hebrew 12:1-2 NIV)
My mother lived past 90 years of age. She was a real warrior in God’s Kingdom. I remember her when she spoke with people in need when I was a child. I recall her joy when someone came to faith and I remember her desperation when one of them whom she had led to Christ fell away from their faith.
When I was sorting out her belongings following her passing away, I found a maxim glued together here and there and she had copied the saying in both her telephone book and diary. This is what it read: ’Look back with thanksgiving – forward with courage – sideways with love - up with faith and hope’.
And that’s really the way my mother lived, a meaningful life in the Lord’s service, where she could look back each day with thanksgiving. A life where the future needn’t be fearful, even when she wandered in the shadow of death. A life where other people always stood in focus and not the ’self’. A life that had its vision locked on a steadfast figure, Jesus Christ, in whom she placed all her hope.
Lord, thank You for the people who have gone before us and in whom we have as images to emulate. Help us to look at their lives and to be inspired by them to a life of holy service for You.