Wednesday, August 15, 2012
America, Preach The Word!
Recently, Pastor James MacDonald mentioned my father, Trevor Baird, in his blog post titled “If You’re Not Heralding the Bible, You’re Not Preaching.”
Dad’s years of public ministry were cut short by health concerns. He suffered from several strokes, a heart attack, kidney failure, diabetes and all of the extras that go along with these kind of trials. Dad suffered the amputation of a foot. He lost the ability to speak loud enough to be heard in a room full of children. In the end, Dad was going blind.
God, in His sovereignty, led my mother into nursing during her forties so that she would be his able helper to the very end. Mom’s able nursing allowed him to suffer through these setbacks without long periods in hospital. Mom taught me much about Christ through her ministry of unfailing love to my Dad during these trials. Mom was there through the toughest of years. On a winter morning in 2007, just like any other day he awoke at home, and before the day was through, Dad had slipped from her loving arms into the Lord’s restoring hands. GLORY! The Lord allowed them a beautiful goodbye in each others arms.
My Dad did not know James MacDonald personally. For much of the last 11 years of his life, Dad sat in a chair in his Morton, Illinois home. He had many friends who were faithful to visit him. They were sent by God! Dad had many years to consider the days that had past him in public ministry. He had many days to reflect with joy over those who had gone on into full time ministry or were serving in leadership capacities in the local church.
But, there were horribly difficult days too. Days of doubt and wondering, “Did I make a difference?” Late in his life someone told our family that James MacDonald had spoken about Dad on Moody radio as having said something that impacted his ministry. We learned this later from people who bought a copy of the broadcast and gave it to us.
God used James MacDonald at a crucial point in Dad's life to remind and encourage an aging and worn out man ... that he had not been forgotten. In the days that followed, James and Kathy MacDonald met my father near the end of his life.
God is forever faithful to His children!
We have a daughter named, Leah. She is the youngest of our five grown children and she suffers from severe Narcolepsy with Cataplexy. This condition will only allow Leah about a 180 second tolerance for boredom before she is launched into REM sleep. Leah attends Harvest Bible Chapel in Crystal Lake, IL, with Susan and I ... so we are exposed to the preaching and teaching of God's word by Pastor James for most of the year. Leah is able to stay awake! I think it is ironic ("a God thing") that today, God is using the preaching of Pastor MacDonald to keep Trevor Baird’s granddaughter from being bored with the Bible. This miracle is centered in the power of God’s word being heralded every week.
Right on Pastor James! Preach the word! May God guard you and your family for proclaiming and heralding His word. May God cause a great awakening in America and throughout the world in this late hour.
To all those who read this blog, … we are closer today to eternity than ever before. Where have you placed God’s word in priority in your life? My Dad used to ask the people in the churches where he preached, “Is what you are living for, worth dying for? God’s word will never change. It will accomplish every word. Let’s get back to the Bible in our churches.
God bless you all today!