Thirty years ago tonight I surrendered my life to Christ to preach His Word. Thirty years. A few days later, as a twelve-year-old boy, I stood in a cottage prayer meeting and preached my first Bible message. What an adventure it has been serving the Lord!
Thousands of times I have had the joy of opening God’s Word and sharing His truth. God willing, tomorrow I will stand and preach the Bible again. I am still amazed that I get to do this with my life.
In an age of novelty and clever ideas I have no desire for something new. I am wary of the new, hungry for the freshtouch of God, and content with eternaltruth. The world doesn’t need better ideas; it needs a spiritual awakening that can only come through God’s truth. I want to give all of my life to this one thing.
After thirty years of preaching the Bible I can tell you…
I am more grateful than ever.It is a humbling thing to think that God would allow any of us to deliver His message to others. Especially me. I know me better than you know me and marvel every day that my Father has been so patient with this sinner. What mercy and grace the Lord has shown to my life. Praise the name of our great God! Paul said it best when he wrote, “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry” (1 Timothy 1:12).
I am more convinced than ever.I know this is what God chose for my life and my conviction has deepened: God’s Word is all-sufficient. It is what every man needs and it meets every need. There are many things that a man could do in ministry, but there is one thing I know I should do, and that is preach the Bible. “For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!” (1 Corinthians 9:16)
I am more excited than ever. I’m not looking for something else to do! If the Lord will allow me to preach and teach His Word until my last breath I will praise His name forever. By God’s grace I want to give the next thirty years, or whatever the Lord allows me to have, to Him and to the greatest work in the world. “I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise. So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also. For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek” (Romans 1:14-16).
Thirty years ago tonight an old country preacher looked me in the face and said, “Son, if you don’t start serving God now you probably never will.” He was right. Days go quickly. Years pass more swiftly than I ever imagined. May God help us all to make them count for eternity.
“We will have all eternity to celebrate our victories, but only a few short hours to win them.” – Missionary Amy Carmichael