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Celebration of a Life Well-Lived
Along with Rev. Dick Schroeder and Rev. Paul Kinnison, I had the opportunity to speak at Edith Cable’s graveside service on Monday morning. I listened to Dick and Gloria Schroeder speak to Edith’s heart for others and sharing about Jesus no matter what. They had been ministering to Edith for years prior to her passing.
Gloria played four songs where Edith had taken existing music and created her own songs that honored the Name of Jesus. Each was touching, not only to the family, but each of us together. I listed to Paul as he shared stories about Edith and her husband. Such sweet memories and all focused around Jesus Christ.
It took me back to the first months I was here at First Baptist Church. Edith was the last remaining Charter Member of First Baptist Church, Sun City West. Caroll Swinney, Kris Hawkins, Dorothy Champley, and I went to interview her with some questions about the church and how it got started.
As I began to interview Edith, I realized that this was going to be a trip. She not only answered the questions but shared so many life experiences. Did you know that some of her ancestors came over on the Mayflower? I didn’t either until my interview with Edith. Edith wrote poetry, children’s books, and a history of some of the immigrants by years gone by. There were more stories that we have preserved on video for our history.
At today’s memorial service, I sensed a powerful legacy for Edith Cable. It was a celebration of a life well-lived. She was known for sharing Jesus wherever she went. People will be in heaven because Edith Cable was an evangelist. She told her story of how Jesus transformed her life. She was excited to share that wherever she went. Is that the kind of legacy that you will leave when your temporal life is over? I pray it is for each of us. A celebration of a life well-lived.
The Eternal Christ
“Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born I am!”
What an amazing sight the burning bush must have been to Moses. During the encounter, he requested the name of the God of the patriarchs in case the Israelites, who were in bondage in Egypt, asked who sent him. At that bush, Moses became God’s representative, speaking to the Israelites on His behalf. “I AM is the shortened form of God’s covenant name Yahweh – that is, “I AM WHO I AM.”
When Jesus used the term “I AM” in speaking to the religious leaders, He was stating that He existed before Abraham. He was also applying God’s holy name to Himself. It was one of the most profound statements He ever made. In that statement, He proclaimed His deity. With authority, He stated that He was a member of the godly council of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
What do you believe about Jesus? Some people believe that Jesus was a good teacher but died a martyr. They don’t believe that He is eternal and the only way to eternal life. But we must not allow opinions to replace truth. Jesus is the great I AM…the Bread of life; the Light of the world; the Door; the good Shepherd; and the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
Father strengthen me to be your representative daily.
Something to Think About
Dr. David Johnson stated in a recent Portraits magazine that “Arizona is home to the fastest-growing county and the fastest-growing city in America, with 220 people a day moving into Maricopa County. That means if we planted an average-size Southern Baptist Church (90 members in Arizona), we would have to plant two churches per day just to keep up with the growth.”
That is something to think about. Such growth yet not enough churches doing what they are doing now to reach them. Each church must do better at reaching people. In addition, we must step-up our efforts to start new church plants. We are blessed to be partnering with Asante Church which will launch on September 13. We are excited about the growth potential and want to continue to help all we can.
Of the 120,000 people who moved to Arizona last year, 90% of them do not know Christ. That means that we are going to have to know what we believe about Jesus. He is the great “I AM” and we must share Christ with everyone we meet. It is an intentional effort. We do what we plan to do. Let’s build those relationships. This seems to remind me of where we started.
Edith Cable shared Jesus with people she met. That sounds like a challenge to me. Even amid COVID-19, we must step out and share Jesus NOW. Are you with me? Let’s Pray, Prepare and Go Share.