Have you ever taken the time to reflect upon the lives of others and how they had an impact on your life? These past few years I had some key and influential people in my life pass from this world into the other. Thankfully I have the assurance and hope that they were believer in Christ and that though their lives were not absent from the storms and struggles of life they held onto this relationship they had and nurtured with Jesus Christ. It is difficult to comprehend when you see yourself as a middle aged person to see people close to your age pass on, it leaves you with a feeling of regret, loss and joy. Regret in the missed opportunity that you in life to keep in touch as we all got busy. Loss as we morn for their families and our own sense of absence. Joy as we celebrate, smile, and laugh at the fun times, life changing moments that you shared together in relationship.
This past year I had to reflect upon Matt and Dee Yukon, they were my Youth Pastor’s while I was a young adult. They introduced me to what it really meant to have a relationship with God and others. They were a loving couple at the time newly married but to this day I recall our first small groups that we had in their home. They moved on in ministry over the years as Matt went back to seminary and later took a pastorate in Connecticut. I must also reflect upon another dear friend who I spent time with in college, William Reyes, a former gang member who gave his heart to the Lord in complete obedience and went to bible college and then to seminary. In my college years he introduced me to urban ministry and was a good friend. Lastly I have to say I have to reflect upon Terry Broadwater a mentor and friend in a time when I thought I understood what it meant to serve God. He took the time to challenge me and befriend me at times, always having a word of direction, encouragement, and empowerment even when the ministry might have exhausted him he made the time to be a support.
There are so many others, that I have had the privilege of serving with that were influential in my life that have gone to be with the Lord but that is for another post, as for now these individuals will always be remembered and never forgotten. “But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” -1 Corinthians 15:54-57