Just an Anniversary

I was in the process of commenting on another blog when I looked at my iPhone and saw today’s date…

June 11.

Still Fighting the Good Fight

June 11 might not be a special day to you, but it is to me. On June 11, 1991, my dad went home to be with the Lord. He fought his fight, and finished his race. I am still fighting and running mine. And boy, the fight just got harder.

Today I start a new week as pastor with enemies. Yes, we have those. My dad had them, and so do I. I guess that’s what comes with the territory, especially when one preaches faithfully, and without compromise or apology, the sincere Word of God. Amazingly, some people get offended.

But here is the real challenge: how to you love those who hate you? It’s not easy, nor simple. It’s not even natural – it’s supernatural.

Philippians 2:5-8 KJV – “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

The mind of Christ? What does that have to do with anything? Are we supposed to let people crucify us, or something? Well, maybe, if that’s what it takes. Jesus said, “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44).

Now that I know who hates me, I know who to bless. And ultimately, that’s the best kind of response, because “if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head” (Romans 12:20).

My dad doesn’t have to fight anymore, but I do. Thankfully, that battle’s not mine, it’s the Lord’s.

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8 Comments

Filed under Christian Maturity, God, Life Lessons, ministry, Preaching, Relationships and Family

8 responses to “Just an Anniversary

  1. Standing with you in prayer

  2. Anthony, I just wanted to remind you that even the greatest teacher of them all, Jesus, when he spoke the words of His Father, he also made people mad and drove them away! Praying for strength – physical & spiritual – to stand against these fiery darts.

    How do you love them? Remember you are not fighting against “flesh & blood” but against the “ruler of the darkness of this world”!

    Hang in there and know that we are praying and we are behind you!

  3. Today would have been my grandfather’s birthday. These comings and goings are significant, and I like the message you preach here. I’m certain your dad is cheering you on from that “great cloud of witnesses”.

  4. Some good information: My parents just celebrated 29 years on Sunday; my wife and I celebrate three years tomorrow (Wednesday)!
    Last month was the 29th anniversary of my maternal grandfather’s death. He died exactly one month from my parents wedding of Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS).
    As you are well aware by now, I and the other men with whom we associate (at least through blogging) stand with you in proclaiming truth, and we stand together in Christ!

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