Pastors Pen - June 2016
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Pastor's Pen
June 2016
by Pastor Alan Darby

Dear Friends,

A couple weeks ago I was watching the TV reporting of the classic, annual “Penn Relays” results. I was inspired by the story of 100 year old Ida Keeling, who set a world record for running the fastest 100 meters by a woman in her age category! Her amazing story overshadowed another part of the report which told of a 99 year old, retired United Methodist pastor from South Jersey, who also competed and finished the race. I recognized the name, Champion Goldy, who was a colleague of mine going back to when I started in ministry. Then District Superintendent, “Champ” Goldy, sat on one of the sub-committees for the Board of Ordained Ministries for one of my elders’ ordination examinations. I remember well the question he asked me in that interview. He asked what my practice was to keep myself physically fit and healthy for a lifetime in ministry! (Those where the days when I was “in shape” and constantly playing sports with my kids and friends…) Champ continues to be a challenge and inspiration to me, in faith, life, and ministry!

It’s the same way with our “race of faith”. Those who have run the race before us say, along with the Apostle Paul, “I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” It’s not that we are competing with one another or with them, but they inspire us to run steadfast and faithful, as we “run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” “So we make it our goal to please Him”, “so that we don’t grow weary and lose heart.” “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith”, the ultimate inspiration. There is much in this world that weighs on us and wears us down, but let us be encouraged to fight the good fight, finish the race, and keep the faith! There is ever in store for us the crown of righteousness which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to us on that day. We are in this together, and for the long run…

In His Regard,

Pastor Al

 
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