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prov·o·ca·tion - something that provokes, arouses, or stimulates. pant - to long eagerly; yearn. a collection of thoughts intended to provoke and inspire. these posts are hoping to encourage people to think, especially Christians, and pant even harder for the waterbrooks of the Lord. If you are not a believer in Christ Jesus, I welcome your perspective and encourage your investigation on these matters.

Friday, November 25, 2005

One Generation Shall Commend Your Works to Another . . .

One generation shall commend Your works to another,
and shall declare your mighty acts.
Psalm 145:4
Yesterday morning, my wife and I came back to Athens, AL (our hometown) to visit family for Thanksgiving. We arrived in Athens around 7:30 a.m., and my parents are usually awake and awaiting us. Yet our expected reception did not happen. Wednesday night, my grandfather (89 years of age) had a stroke after eating dinner. He was rushed to the hospital and is now in stable condition. Both he and my grandmother (same age) have been in great physical health, although their mental health has been steadily declining. Yesterday, I went to the hospital with my family and grandmother to see him after the incident. He cannot recognize us, but I saw and heard something I will never forget. My grandmother leaned over and kissed him several times, saying, "Nolan, do you recognize me? I am your wife. I love you." She gently held his cheek and looked at him with same love and passion as a bride saying "I Do" for the first time. Yet, in their case, they have been married for 64 years (and courted 8 years previous to that). Doctors have said that my grandfather will not recover from this stroke and will likely pass in a matter of weeks. For the past 10 years, my grandfather has battled Alzheimer's as well as a condition where he is unable to communicate his thoughts into words. Yet, what has been so amazing to me is that in these "silent" years of my grandfather, he has spoken so much more than words - and this is evident in the love our family has for him. More than being a World War II veteran and minister of the gospel for the past 60 years, Nolan Brister is a man of God and my grandfather - of whom I am privileged to carry his name. Just recently, I was taken up to the third floor of Boyce Centennial Library (library of Southern Seminary) to see the graduating class of 1943, of which my grandfather was a proud member. There's a lifetime of things to say about him, some of which I will share a later time. Let me close and ask for your prayers for my family. There are no question marks about this man. There is no unfinished business for him. Soon he will be "complete in Christ" and beholding the beauty and glory of his Savior. But it is still hard for us here. We are losing a giant in our family - one whose shade we all found shelter, a tree whose roots have been firmly planted by the waters, a life that has been well lived. Yesterday, we spent our Thanksgiving Day in a hospital room. Quite a fitting place for such a day, for our family gives thanks to Jesus for the man who, though lying down, stands tall than ever before. As my dad explained the immanent death of my grandfather, she will tender assurance said, "Nolan has been ready to go on and be with Jesus. We don't need to do anything to keep him here. Heaven's waiting for him, and I won't be far behind." My grandfather served God's purpose for him in his generation, and has commended to my father and me the greatness of our God. The rich deposit of faith and testimony of the glorious knowledge of God has been handed down to us, and it is our solemn responsibility as good stewards to commend God's works to another generation to come. May God allow us to follow in his train. As the days ahead will be both difficult and joyous, please remember my family in your prayers, and my grandmother (Frances Brister) especially. Thank you.


Blogger Matthew said...

Well spoken - I will certainly be praying.

11/26/2005 10:12:00 AM


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