A FEW SIGNIFICANT INSIGHTS INTO MY LIFE AND FAITH
Nothing will ever kill my will to live my life here on earth for my Savior Jesus Christ. Nothing. All for Christ! All I’ve got! Till the very end. Is there still more I could lose? Yes. Is there still more pain I may have to endure? Yes. Are there still more injustices I may sustain? Yes. I have set my face like flint, I will not relent.
My enthusiasm and passion for living each and every day for Jesus, for waking up eager and zealous to serve God and serve others has only increased as others have tried to destroy my life. They will never win!
I simply refuse to let loss and grief define me. I have walked through excruciating losses, griefs, sorrows, and heartbreak, and the greatest balm of all was taking those terrible burdens, losses, sorrows, and agonizing, gut-wrenching pains to the Lord Jesus Himself. He sustained me, encouraged me, lifted my spirit, and heard the outpouring of my rage, anguish, hurt, agony, and fears. He is my very best friend! Far above any other human being in my life.
My pain, suffering, and loss are the price I pay for my deep, abiding faith in God. I know I will be eternally rewarded for it, that the cross I bear and carry each day brings great glory to my Savior Jesus Christ. Whether others acknowledge it, ridicule it, or ever understand. I know the truth.
Each and every day, I pray to God, recounting all I have to be thankful and grateful for. This verbal, out-loud, emotive prayer practice and habit of expressing gratitude to God has actually saved me from deep, dark emotional moods that would consume my soul, and suck my will to live.
I take joy and conscious pleasure in what I have, rather than dreaming of or thinking about what I don’t have.
I take joy in wearing my black leather motorcycle jacket as often as I can.
I take joy in wearing the same black leather boots every day.
I take joy in wearing the same camo pants every day.
I take joy in eating the same delicious bowl of soup every day.
I take joy in eating the same meals every day.
I take joy in the wife of my youth, in her love, companionship, and fellowship.
I take joy in driving my $3800 Toyota Corolla, living without debt.
I take joy in Pastoring and serving others, helping them succeed.
I take joy in writing to others to encourage and build them up in their life and faith.
I take joy in sharing in these articles all the wisdom God has given to me with you.
I take joy in using my 22-year-old Total Gym every day.
I take joy in my hour prayer walks, each day getting to talk with God.
I take joy in the wonderful, unencumbered simplicity of my life.
I take joy in the comfort and promises of God.
I take joy in the privilege of doing this ministry, Strong Disciple.
I find great fun, joy, and pleasure in being wise!
LB: The fool’s fun is being bad; a wise man’s fun is being wise.
NLT: Doing wrong is fun for a fool; but living wisely brings pleasure to the wise.
Because of my faith in God, I strive to make the very most of the realities God has allowed at this stage of my life. I will make the most of my “Patmos exile and chains,” and the injustices inflicted upon me. Faith is the victory that overcomes the world!
Helping you become a Strong Disciple,
Because of Jesus,
Pastor Mark Darling