Know someone who is ‘pure love’? I did. Remembering Pastor Gary.

Today is February 13th. It is the day before the noted Valentine’s Day, America’s day of love.

I have been meaning to write about something- and for some reason have put it off, but today, God has put it on my heart, “Do it now!” So I write.

Do you know someone who was a picture of ‘love’ to you? They might not even be around anymore, but you have that picture in your mind and maybe it was just a moment you remember that touches your heart deeply – no words, just ‘pure love’.

Pure love lasts forever. It doesn’t disappear. It is lasting – it has a fragrance that is ever present.

My someone who is a picture of ‘love’ to me is my brother in the Lord, My Pastor Gary.
Pastor Gary was the children’s Pastor of Calvary Chapel Old Bridge in NJ, (I do write ‘was’ because not only did we move, but he has gone home to be with the Lord.) He was, for me, a human form, a human example of my Jesus. But he was so humble that he wouldn’t know what to do with that comment, he would just say, ‘God is good!’

How he could oversee a children’s ministry of over a thousand kids and stay in the ‘slow lane’ I will never know.But he did. I wrote once about him that I always looked at him at having some kind of good ‘nerve damage’ – that I did not have! He just didn’t have all the nerves that most people have. He never seemed in a hurry or rushed. He took his time.
Well,I don’t think our Jesus rushed around flustered – I picture Jesus in the ‘slow lane’!
Thank you for your example Pastor G. Do you know someone like that?

I have a picture in my mind of Pastor G., a somewhat tall man standing in the hall to greet the children and the parents on a Sunday morning or a Thursday evening. He spent so many years exhorting our kids,(and us as well) with a very simple expression, “Be a Blessing!” It was always such a sweet affirmation and yet a little kick at the same time. Powerful.

And even though the words weren’t always spoken I would watch his approachable spirit and gentle humble smile- and see him bless each child as they went by- his very nature was affirming- “Such a blessing!” were the thoughts of his heart toward the children! And he knew these kids!

How I love my Pastor Gary. And I thank the Lord for giving me the privilege to have been ‘splashed’ by his love. It was really Jesus’ love. But his ‘splash’ of Jesus has touched my heart forever,
and you might know someone who has ‘splashed Jesus’ in your life – it’s like a splash of a beautiful fragrance, the fragrance of Christ.

So I think Jesus has a Valentine’s Day everyday, and His Valentine to us is His Word, and tucked inside His amazing letter to us, (though kind of long, 66 books long) He tells us what love is:

“This is love,
not that we loved God,
but that He loved us
and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”
(meaning, He sent Jesus to be the substitute for us in that the ‘wages of sin is death. Someone had to die, and Jesus said, I will.)

Now this is love.
I love Valentine’s Day! Thank you Pastor Gary for your example and thank you Jesus for Your love.


Author: tonirypkema

Wife to 1, mother of 11, daughter of 1. "The most amazing woman in the world." -Jared (son)

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