As I approach a pretty big birthday by God’s grace, I’m taking a spiritual inventory these days. Things I was once fanatical about as a younger man are now no longer important but were a waste of time. All of that stuff is now fading out of sight like lines on a freeway in the rear view mirror of life. All of the drugs, alcohol, and sin that I once reveled in while in living in Hollywood and that kept me bound are but a distant memory today.
I gave my heart and life to Christ in 1988 and am exceedingly thankful for God’s mercy and grace. However, over the years, I’ve still made some dumb decisions and serious mistakes where my wife, children, and various church congregations are concerned. Some might say it’s a mistake just to bring this up but I’m at a point in life where I just need to be real. At a conference in Grapevine TX years ago, T.D. Jakes made a statement that shook me to the core. He was speaking to about 600 of us pastors and said, “Many of you have been guilty of committing “adultery” on your wives and children. You’ve done it by being consumed with your church and cheating your wife and kids of your time, love, and attention…to the point where she feels that there’s ‘another woman.’ He went on to say, “I know because I’ve been there. But you need to remember that the Church is the Bride of Christ, not yours. Now, you need to care for your own bride.”
I had gotten my priorities out of proportion for a number of years in regard to my own family, and for that, there’s been serious regret and tears of repentance before the Lord.
By the grace and goodness of God, I’m still an ordained minister in the Assemblies of God USA today (27 years) and a traveling Evangelist. I’m still learning and “under construction” but I realize that the most important priorities in life are my God, family, and then ministry…in that order.
Didn’t intend to write a story here, but just share a few thoughts. I guess that happens as one gets older, and is hopefully still growing. By the goodness and grace of God, may the rest of all our lives be the best of our lives.