LEAD TO LIFE!
I was driving this early morning when a thought came to me. I thought of a specific day when Joe Dillard and I were on one of his discovery drives. Joe loved to drive around for hours thinking and talking with God. He was a master at getting people in a position where they would open up to him. On this particular day he asked me if I could give anything to the world, what would it be? My reply went something like this, I would like to be filthy rich so I could share it with every family around the world and give each family a little peace from worrying about food or bills so they might feel the joy of Christmas. Boy! Was that dumb or what? He accepted it with a grin, thinking God we got our work cut out for us. Little to my knowledge over the next several weeks he gave me the answer to his question by simply living his life, God’s way. He gave people a little glimpse of Jesus with kindness, encouragement, love, and guidance. He let you know straight up that he’s there for them! He lived with the creed to leave everyone, and everything and every place better than he found them. He learned from His profound love for Jesus how he could “Lead to Life!”
You see through his lifestyle of everyday living; he gave people Jesus. He introduced them to a Savior who could give everlasting life to those who believe. Not only did he introduce people to Jesus, but he also helped them to get to know God’s Holy Trinity as he showered them with all kinds of literature, introduced them to people who would help, and most of all he invested himself in declaring them to be a somebody in the eyes of man and God. My words here, Joe Dillard was called to lead people into life! A life following Jesus into better decision-making for better outcomes, a life of building relationships with family and respected friends, a life filled with God’s love to guide them through the struggles that will come. Joe believed and lived Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV), 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another- and all the more as you see the Day approaching. This is “Lead to Life?” living.
What everyone needs right now will not fit in a box to be wrapped all pretty with ribbon and bow and then concealed under a Christmas tree until the proper time. Neither will it be disliked or discarded upon its presentation, which is the fate of many gifts. Love is a gift that may not always be requited, but it is seldom found unwanted. Many are passing on those opportunities to example God’s love. Some because of fear or ignorance, and sometimes pride, along with a host of other excuses that fail to bless anyone. I don’t think we really understand the dynamics behind “lead to life” as Jesus directs. Many times, we fail to share our life with someone, and we miss God blessing them through us as a result we miss the blessing God had for us in being obedient. Reread Hebrews 10:24-25 and think on spur one another, how can we spur (motivate) without being spurred? Meeting together can be and usually is a time of relationship building and is certainly a time for encouraging and uplifting each other. This year our lifestyle should “Lead to Life?”
Joe Dillard went home to be with Jesus on Easter Sunday 2022, and he gave me something that not even Satan can take away. He gave me a priceless gift and I put it where it can’t be damaged or stolen. This gift has no expiration date or limitations plus it is eternal. Joe passionately gave me the love of God from his overflow and through his life he taught me to stay the course. He gave his life that I might have a life with Jesus and when I say he gave his life, “we did life together”. God gave me Joe that I might experience his passion to follow, that I could witness first-hand Jesus living through someone to “Lead to Life!” My best description of Joe Dillard is found in Luke 10:33-35 (NIV), 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ Joe Dillard lived a life of integrity and had a heart set on walking as closely to Jesus as is humanly possible. “Lead to Life!” today.
Lord, under the direction of Jesus, would you help us live to bring pleasure to your heart? I pray for us to have a lifestyle that will “Lead to Life” with you Lord. Help us to live out Titus 2:7 (NIV), In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness, 8 and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us. As we follow you, Lord, have our desire to invest our gifts and blessings from you with others. Help us Lord to give our lives so that others may follow our “Lead to Life”, with you. Amen
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK BY BEING A BLESSING TO OTHERS!