Scottish theologian James Moffatt (1870-1944) said, “When a man leaves this world, be he righteous or unrighteous, he leaves something in the world. He may leave something that will grow and spread like a cancer or a poison, or he may leave something like the fragrance of perfume or a blossom of beauty that permeates the atmosphere with blessing.”
That is a beautiful observance of what our lives can be for God, even after we have departed this world.
As Christians, I believe it is imperative that we leave a lasting, encouraging legacy that points to Christ as our redeemer (Psalm 49:15) and encourages people to recall us as wise, selfless followers of the Savior (Philippians 2:3-4).
As you will read in this month’s Drawing Closer newsletter, Thomas Road Baptist Church recently celebrated its 60th anniversary. The church is the legacy of a leader that embodied that verse in Philippians. He was my father, Jerry Falwell.
My dad was an innovator, constantly planning and praying about how we could enhance our ministries to reach more people with the Gospel.
I believe it was this selfless, sold-out desire that caused God to plant such extraordinary visions in his heart.
In many ways, dad was an ordinary man who loved the simple pleasures of family, friends, travel and good conversation. But he was also quite remarkable in that he so daringly took God at His Word and launched into ministry with such boldness. He has been described as audacious, dauntless and even as a bulldog because of how he sought to heed God’s call.
Not long after dad had passed away, I told CBN how I learned two key things from him that were empowering me to carry on in his footsteps. Those two things were (and continue to be):
1. The end is worth the beginning. I saw through dad’s life that we must remain focused on the seeds that God plants in our hearts, no matter what the circumstances that come into our path. We must remain focused on the goal of finishing well for Christ, even as the shadows of doubt or upheaval trouble our path.
2. The reward is worth the cost. God never makes mistakes; He is incapable of doing so. And so, even when we cannot see the larger picture that He sees, we must trust Him and carry on in full confidence of the One who leads us through His Word (Psalm 119:105) and His Spirit (I Corinthians 3:16).
I noted that dad was an innovator. And I believe that this ministry is a continuing measure of what dad saw as a way to unite believers together in one accord in order to accomplish God’s call to reach people with the Good News.
We continue this legacy today.
With all my heart, I love the Faith Partners ministry. Through your help and prayers, we are reaching people for Christ that ten years ago — even one year ago — we never would have dreamed possible.
The Faith Partners ministry is a vital part of what we are doing to reach growing numbers of cities for Christ and to take the Gospel into many world locales where people have literally never heard about Jesus. We are consumed with a desire to see more people follow Him.
Together, we are planting churches, training pastors, initiating Bible studies, sending out Bible guides and Bibles into many global settings. And you continue to have such a huge role in it all as we see more people coming to a relationship with the Lord!
Just as dad carried out big plans, I continue to dream big for Christ.
You see, we cannot afford to coast or to live off our past successes. Proverbs 29:18 tells us, “Where there is no vision, the people perish….” God continues to call us to specific ministry, just as He did with my father. And we must carry on, for His glory.
Even though our ministries have allowed us to see more than one million souls saved through our 60 years, God desires more from us. And how can we say “no” to Him?
God is continuing to give us brand-new visions that, while connected with the past, carry us into the future with greater capability of reaching souls for Him. Our new Hope Now TV network (www.HopeNow.tv) is playing a big role in this effort and you are greatly helping us in this important new venture.
The world continues to need Jesus and we must take the Good News to them.
As I have noted, in this life you will likely never meet any of the souls that have been saved because of your support. But in Glory, there will be sweet get-togethers with people who will say, “Because you cared, I will live with Christ through eternity.”
That is why we carry on.
As the old song says, “It will be worth it all when we see Jesus!” I pray God’s continued blessings on you and your family as you serve Him.
Your friend in Christ,