Executive Chaplains’ Corner

We all are a step closer to the grace than yesterday

“His master replied, ‘Well done, good “And I’ll say to myself, ‘You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.’” ‘But God said to him, “You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?” ‘This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God’” (New International Version 1984, Luke 12:19-21).

Last month I reached the big 6-0!

As I get older the conversations with friends tend to be about retirement.  People ask me when I am going to retire and what I am going to do.  I need to ask my classmates about that since for some strange reason they all seem older than me :).

For me, the question remains the same for my upcoming years as it has for the previous years, “What does God want with my life?”

As I reflect back over 60 years there are many good times and some bad.  Not everything has turned out the way I had prayed or wished, but the Lord has been very gracious and merciful with me.  He has been faithful!

Recently I read Luke 12:19-21.  This passage was a good reminder that joy and contentment do not come from material possessions, but from the Lord.  This passage also gave me insight into the hearts and the passions of our volunteer chaplains who could be “[taking] life easy,” but who have decided to be “rich toward God.”

What does “rich toward God” look like?  It looks like the faithfulness and commitment that you see in the lives of our volunteer chaplains who visit  the county jails each week with one prayer on their hearts.  “Lord, I am tired.  Lord, it is getting harder and harder to make this trip.  Lord, help me to know what to say.  Lord, use me today to give hope to one man or woman.  Lord, use me to deliver your gospel message of transformation through your Son, Jesus Christ.”

This passage and our volunteer chaplains have challenged me to make sure that my prayer is that I can keep serving the Lord and others whether for another year or another generation.

Pray for continued courage and strength for our volunteers.  Also, pray that the Lord would send some younger volunteers to replace the faithful workers we have who like me are not getting any younger.

Did you think I made an error in the title of this article?  I actually meant to write, “We are all a step closer to the grave than yesterday.”  When I reread what I had written I noticed that I had written grace instead of grave.  I quickly changed it to grave, but then decided that grace might be the better word.

I challenge you to embrace God’s sovereignty, the hope of the
resurrection, His grace and even the grave.  It is coming!  Be ready!  Be rich toward God!

Unleashing the captives,

Tim Gentry
Executive Chaplain

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