Role model

Entry for June 13, 2006
“I want to be George W—- when I grow up,” my husband says to me.

George is Pastor to Senior Adults at our church. A lovely man. He divides his time these days between spending the morning at the Alzheimer’s unit, feeding and cherishing his wife, who is almost completely conquered by the disease, and visiting church people in the hospital and nursing homes.

“That would be a good thing to be, ” I say, “but why specifically?”

“Because every time I talk to him, he has several scripture verses that relate to our conversation, and they just roll out of him, and then he’s reminded of a hymn that encourages him.”

Listening to George preach always makes me smile. He may start with a passage and a theme, but OH! He is just overcome by the beauty of the Gospel, and can’t help but rhapsodizing, and more and more Scripture flows out. And the hymns–he remembers this precious line from an old hymn, or that chorus from an old hymn, and don’t they just make your heart swell within you, from all the joy that the Lord has given us? You don’t walk away from George’s sermons with a 3-point outline. But you do walk away with a refreshing sense of “Oh YEAH! The Lord has saved me, and He is with me.”

George is the one who said, last year some time when he was in the middle of moving his wife from their home into the Alzheimer’s unit, “The last hill is the steepest.”

He is on that last hill. It is very steep. I know from watching my grandmother soldier up that same hill that it is incredibly lonely–worse than being widowed. And yet, George is full of peace and joy. He goes about ministering to those who need ministry. He enjoys life and enjoys God. And the Scripture continues to roll off his tongue in every conversation.


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