. . . And Some Make Their Whole (Beautiful) Lives All About Jesus

Psalm 149:4 ESV
For the Lord takes pleasure in his people;

    he adorns the humble with salvation.


Often saints so obedient and trusting
walk through steady lives of serving,
focusing all of their attention
on Him, their Lord and their Master.

Becky’s parents exemplify God’s people at their best—humbly living out in service to others their praise to God.

If you walk where they daily walked before you
you  will see lives all around you
blessed and redeemed by their Savior
loving as He loved before them.

The world never knows much about
them for people seek after
those whom we view as our leaders
striving for honor and glory.

God welcomes the humble and faithful
who serve Him and seek for His glory
and worship by loving all people
praising sweet Jesus as Savior.

In our boisterous world of over-hyped media and all kinds of voices screaming for attention, I thank God for quiet, solid Christians who faithfully live out their faith day-to-day, always pointing people in need to Jesus. These wonderful people live out the Beatitudes before the world, and in doing so, bring Him glory as His Kingdom steadily grows from strength to strength. The Gospel is all about touching lives one-by-one with the Gospel while “little Christs” simply live out among those all around them the beauty and the power and healing love of Jesus who reigns in their hearts.

I thank God for the many who have loved me even so and blessed my life. Today I am thinking of two of the most blessed Beatitude-type people I know; Rev. and Mrs. William Girdler. Actually, I  call them Brent and Joyce Girdler, and I am blessed to have them as my parents-in-law, or “in-love” as many would say. They have, for as long as I have known them, loved Becky and me, their family, and pretty much the whole world, much like Jesus does.

They continue to live remarkable lives together, now in their sixty-sixth year of marriage. Over those years they have raised my wife, Becky and her sisters, Jeanette and Debbie. They have done so as they answered God’s Call into ministry, attended Clear Creek Bible College, pastored churches in Kentucky and Indiana, and worked careers; he in a grocery company’s warehouse, and she in a school cafeteria.

Always, they have remained faithful to God’s calling to parenthood, to ministry and to continuously bearing witness to Jesus and how He makes all the difference through the ups-and-downs of raising a family and pastoring together.

Today, they have six grandsons, one granddaughter, and thirteen great-grandchildren. Through the years the Girdlers have supported their daughters as they in turn established families and careers—always ready to jump into action when one family or the other needed childcare, transportation, shopping assistance; the thousand things parents do out of genuine and lifelong love.

I speak from mine and Becky’s experience while we served together as missionaries in Nigeria and Niger in Africa for over thirty-five years. They drove with Becky’s sister Jeanette, and her husband, Keith, over five hours to pick us up in Chicago, and bring us home to welcome our daughter, Rachel, on our first trip home to visit family, when she was a mere five-months old. Then Becky’s other sister, Debbie, traveled with their parents to Nigeria, to welcome John David in person, just a few weeks after he was born. They literally brought a baby bed full of clothes and diapers for both John David and his toddler sister. There were times throughout our children’s growing up years when Becky’s parents literally provided the clothes on our children’s backs.

All of this took place as they faithfully served pioneer churches in Indiana while  Brent worked night shifts at the warehouse. Such churches met the spiritual needs of countless families and proclaimed the Gospel in places where far too few were available to proclaim the hope of Christ in the midst of challenging places for doing so.

I can always sense the power of the Holy Spirit in his pastor’s heart through Brent’s prayers. I cannot count the times my heart has been moved deeply by the deep and humble, eloquent, and fervent prayers he prays. I have been inspired, encouraged and challenged as I have experienced his prayers in the midst of hectic days with family, ministry, and work. Both Brent and Joyce purposefully find  time every busy day to turn aside for their devotional times with God. Together they are such a beautiful example for all of us blessed to be in their family.

Over and over again I have watched as they silently gave a gift to someone in need, practicing what Jesus taught in “ . . . doing for the least of these.” (Matthew 25:40) They certainly have spent their lives well, returning to God their loving and humble service. I would certainly say they have made their whole (beautiful) lives all about Jesus. All of us who are part of both their family and their faith family are incredibly blessed to know them. Praise His Holy Name!





3 Comments on “

  1. They seem to be precious, caring and loving people! Thank you for sharing their love for Christ with all who read your post. You two are following those footsteps as well.

    • Thanks Diane. You and your love for Jesus and serving others remind me of them.

  2. What a blessing these two have been to your family and God’s Kingdom! Thanks for sharing! I enjoyed reading about Becky’s parents and I’m grateful to people like them who have served our Savior quietly and earnestly with joy!
    God bless them!

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